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Reshuffle in Congress: Digvijay Singh removed as incharge of Karnataka, Goa

Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh was on Saturday removed as the party's general secretary incharge of Karnataka and Goa.

India TV Politics Desk, New Delhi [ Published on: April 30, 2017 6:29 IST ]
Digvijay Singh removed asCongress incharge of Karnataka, Goa
Image Source : PTI Digvijay Singh removed asCongress incharge of Karnataka, Goa

Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh was on Saturday removed as the party's general secretary incharge of Karnataka and Goa. 

The development comes following Congress' failure to form government in Goa despite having emerged as the single largest party in the assembly election this February. 

The charge of Karnataka has been given to party MP K.C. Venugopal, who has been appointed a General Secretary while Chella Kumar has been named in charge of Goa.

Venugopal, the Lok Sabha MP from Alappuzha in Kerala and the party's deputy whip in the Lok Sabha, is considered close to Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi. 

"Congress president Sonia Gandhi has assigned the tasks of looking after Karnataka and Goa affairs to new AICC teams. While K C Venugopal has been made general secretary incharge of Karnataka, A Chella Kumar has been made AICC incharge of Goa," party general secretary Janaradan Dwivedi said in a statement. 

Venugopal will be assisted by four secretaries to take care of Karnataka affairs--Manickam Tagore, PC Vishnunadh, Madhu Yashki Goud and Sake Sailjanath. 

Elections will be held to the Karnataka assembly in the first half of 2018. The Congress is in power in the state.

In Goa Chella Kumar has been made the AICC incharge of Goa, while Amit Deshmukh will assist him as the Secretary AICC of the state. 

Another party leader Madhusudan Mistry ceased to be a general secretary after he was made a member of the party's Central Election Authority for holding the organisational polls later this year. 

Sonia Gandhi also formed an Advisory Committee of CEA in which Shamsher Singh Dullo, Rajya Sabha MP, Ashk Ali Taq, former MP and Biren Singh Engti, MP, have been made members.

Gandhi had earlier appointed former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot as party's general secretary incharge of Gujarat, slated to go to polls later this year, removing party leader Gurudas Kamat from the post. 

Some more changes are expected in other states like Himachal Pradesh which goes to polls later this year along with Gujarat. 

I am loyal to Congress and Nehru Gandhi Family: Digvijay Singh

Though removal of Singh, considered close to the Gandhis has shocked many, he continues to be general secretary incharge of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. 

Singh has been one of the most vocal Congressmen advocating Rahul Gandhi's elevation as party president. 

"I am happy finally new Team is being picked up by Rahul ji. I enjoyed working with Congress Leaders and Workers in Goa and Karnataka. Convey my gratitude for all their support," Singh said. 

"I am loyal to the Party and Nehru Gandhi Family and owe my position to the Party and to them," he said in a series of tweets. 

The party had clinched 17 seats in the 40-member legislature, four more than the BJP, which managed to cobble together a majority with local parties to form its government under Manohar Parrikar

Singh, considered close to Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, had come under severe criticism for going slow in initiating talks with smaller parties to sew up a coalition and stake claim to form a Congress-led government. 

The former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh will, however, continue as general secretary incharge of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. 

After the Goa debacle, Singh had accused Parrikar of having cheated the people of the state by "robbing the mandate". He had alleged Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, who was despatched to Panaji by BJP president Amit Shah to explore ways of forming a government, indulged in "aggressive MLA shopping" to retain power. 

Parrikar had shot back and taunted Singh for Congress' failure to form government. 

"My special thanks to honourable member Digvijay Singh, who happened to be in Goa but did nothing so that I could form the government," Parrikar had told Rajya Sabha while making sarcastic comments against Singh. 

(With agencies) 

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