Senior Congress leader C Puttarangashetty, whose name has been cleared by the party for the position of Deputy Speaker of the Karnataka Assembly, on Sunday refused to accept the post.
The MLA, who is a strong Ministerial aspirant, said he decided not to accept the post following the views expressed by his supporters and voters. ”I won’t accept the Deputy Speaker post, my supporters and voters have asked me not to accept it, stating that I may not be accessible for them. So they don’t want me to accept it, so I will not accept it,” Puttarangashetty told reporters here.
Noting that he represents the Uppara community and was aspiring to be a Minister, he said, if he accepts the responsibility of the Deputy Speaker, he cannot be amidst his people and it will be difficult for him to function.
”I have conveyed this to Siddaramaiah (Chief Minister) too, but he insisted that I should accept it, but I had told him that I will ask my people and decide…..it will be difficult for me to function in the constituency and I may lose link with the people of the segment as I may stay away from it for long,” he added.
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Responding to a query, Puttarangashetty said he was assured a Minister position and hence he had been to Delhi.
”But on reaching Bengaluru, I got to know that I have not made it to the Ministry. I don’t know what the reason is, Siddaramiah can explain,” he said, adding that his supporters, who were upset staged a protest and have requested him to function just as an MLA.
Puttarangashetty’s candidature for the Deputy Speaker’s post has been approved by AICC president Mallikarjun Kharge, the party had said recently.
He won from Chamarajanagara defeating BJP’s V Somanna, who was Minister in the previous government.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Saturday had expanded his cabinet by inducting 24 new Ministers.