In a minor setback to the Congress leader D K Shivakumar, his protégé, Congress MLA from Belagavi Rural, Laxmi Hebbalkar, has been replaced by Dr Pushpa Amarnath as the Karnataka Mahila Congress chief.
Pushpa is from former CM Siddaramaiah’s home district Mysuru. An official statement from the All India Congress Committee, signed by senior Congress leader Ashok Gehlot, announced the party’s pick for the coveted post after a month-long process.
Pushpa is also related to former Hunsur MLA H P Manjunath. Siddaramaiah was also the first Congress leader from the state to congratulate her on Twitter, followed by Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara.
In September, There were rumblings in state Congress where a clear attempt was being made to replace Laxmi after her run-in with the Jarkiholi brothers of Belagavi.
PushpaAmarnath, who was made a member of All India Congress Committee in March this year, has been working as a general secretary in the Mahila Congress with Laxmi at the helm of affairs.
Mahila Congress national president SushmitaDev had asked for names of 15 probables after the party’s decision to replace Laxmi was taken a month ago. Five names were shortlisted from the list of 15 out of which Pushpa was chosen for the post.
“Pushpa is hardworking and I am sure she will work for the development of the party and uphold the values of Mahila Congress. My only advice to her is to ensure there is no factionalism in the women’s wing,” said outgoing president LaxmiHebbalkar.
Laxmi, who served as president of Belagavi district Congress for five-and-half years, was appointed state Mahila Congress chief in May 2015. Indicating that she was willing to step down, Laxmi said as an MLA, her constituency needed more of her time.
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