Bangalore, Jan. 1: Karnataka chief minister P.C. Siddaramiah today inducted two tainted Congress legislators into his cabinet, over a month after the resignation of a minister over a mining scam.
Roshan Baig and D.K. Shivakumar were included in an apparent bid to woo the minority community and the Vokkaligas ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. But their induction has come at a time Rahul Gandhi has promised to fight corruption.
While Baig faces charges in the multi-crore Abdul Karim Telgi fake stamp paper scam, Shivakumar was one of those named in a Lokayukta report on illegal mining in the state.
While putting together his ministerial team after the Congress won power in May last year, Siddaramiah had not included Baig and Shivakumar.
He had also resisted pressure to take Congress MLA Anil Lad, who too faced mining scam charges. However, to placate Anil, his cousin Santosh was made a minister. But Santosh had to quit in November after an Opposition outcry.
Baig, a six-time MLA, had to resign from the Congress cabinet of S.M. Krishna after his name cropped up in the Telgi scandal of 2003.
Both Shivkumar and Baig have denied the charges and alleged “political conspiracy”. But the duo’s induction has upset some senior Congress MLAs hoping to get berths.