- Karnataka is the only large state in India still in the grip of the Congress
- Rejig comes as Siddaramaiah, an 'outsider', blamed for corruption, inaction
- Caste arithmetic drives reshuffle but leaves loyalists unhappy
As he sat down for some deep- breathing exercises on Yoga Day, Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah had just completed a long-overdue cabinet reshuffle. Many of the 14 Congress veterans dropped from the cabinet muttered that the party didn’t need any help from the BJP for a “Congress-mukt Bharat”, given that Karnataka is the only big state left with the Congress. Bandh calls, protests, some street violence and not-so-pleasant accusations followed.
“Are we some old pairs of slippers to be discarded like that?” asked M.H. Ambareesh, 63, the actor-politician from Mandya, the Vokkaliga heartland, who resigned as MLA when he was dropped. “I was a cabinet colleague...