Siddaramaiah: Metamorphosis of Janata Pariwar man into Cong CM
Bangalore: A man rooted in 'Janata Pariwar' for two-and-half-decades and known for strident anti-Congress stance, it has been a remarkable turn-around for Siddaramaiah, who was sworn in as Karnataka's 22nd Chief Minister today.
From early 1980s to 2005, Siddaramaiah who comes from a poor farmers family, was a die-hard anti-Congressman but his ouster from JDS of former Prime Minister Deve Gowda brought him to political cross-roads.
Joining the Congress less than seven years ago, he has today realised his life-time ambition, another example that patience and perseverance eventually pays.
After the fractured verdict in 2004, the Congress and JDS formed a coalition government, with Siddaramaiah, then in JDS, being made deputy Chief Minister with Congress N Dharam Singh becoming Chief Minister.
Siddaramaiah holds the grouse that he had the opportunity to become Chief Minister but Gowda scuttled his prospects.
In 2005, he chose to position himself as a backward classes leader he is from Kuruba community, the third largest caste in Karnataka by spearheading AHINDA (Kannada acronym for minorities, backward classes and Dalits) conventions, coincidentally at a time when Deve Gowda's son H D Kumaraswamy was seen as a rising star of the party.
Siddaramaiah was sacked from JDS, where he had earlier served as its state unit chief, with critics of the party insisting that he was removed as Deve Gowda was keen to promote Kumaraswamy as the party's leader.
Siddaramaiah, an advocate, at the time also talked about "political sanyas" and even toyed with the idea of going back to his law practice. He ruled out floating a regional outfit, saying he can't muster money power. Both the BJP and the Congress wooed him to join them.