Bengaluru: In what is perceived to be a show of one-upmanship in the race to the Chief Minister’s post in case the Congress attains majority in next year’s Assembly elections, KPCC President D.K. Shivakumar and Opposition leader and former Chief Minister Siddharamaiah are bracing up to show their strength by organising separate rallies.
While on the one hand Siddharamaiah loyalists have planned a mega birthday bash at Davangere for their leader in August marking his 75th birthday, KPCC President Shivakumar is gearing up to hold a mega rally at the Palace Grounds in Bengaluru as a show of strength.
Siddharamaiah’s fans and supporters have started making preparations for the former CM’s big birthday bash at Davangere in central Karnataka on Aug. 3, though his birthday is on Aug.12.
Committees have been formed to make arrangements and invite about 5 lakh Congress workers and supporters. Besides, leaders of all communities will be invited and the event would be used to mobilise voters from Kuruba community to which Siddharamaiah belongs, minority, backward classes and Dalit (AHINDA) communities.
The former CM is expected to use his birthday celebration to send a message to the party High Command about his popularity and the necessity of projecting him as the party’s Chief Ministerial candidate ahead of the 2023 Assembly polls.
It may be recalled that in 2012, Congress leaders, sensing victory in the 2013 Assembly polls, had celebrated Siddharamaiah’s 65th birthday also in a big way.
On the other hand, KPCC President Shivakumar, a Vokkaliga leader, who is associated with the Congress for decades, too is planning to hold a mega rally of his supporters, mostly from old Mysuru region, at Bengaluru in a couple of months in order to send a message to the Congress top brass that he is the frontrunner for the CM’s post in case the Congress is voted to power.