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Congress can go ahead with KPCC president coronation with limited people: K'taka CM

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Bengaluru, June 11: Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa on Thursday said his government doesn't have any reservation about the Congress organising an event for D K Shivakumar's formal take over as the party's state chief, with a limited number of people in attendance.

Congress can go ahead with KPCC president coronation with limited people: Ktaka CM

The government on Tuesday had denied permission for the event that was scheduled to take place on June 14, citing COVID-19 related guidelines that are in place, aimed at controlling the spread of coronavirus, which elicited strong reaction from the Congress.

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    "We don't have any reservations for D K Shivakumar to organise Congress party events, but because of COVID-19 there are restrictions everywhere regarding gathering of people in large numbers," Yediyurappa said.

    Speaking to reporters here, he said, we don't have any problem about them organising their party activities. political parties have their freedom.

    "Yesterday, I contacted him (Shivakumar) over phone and conveyed that he can organise the event in a peaceful manner without gathering many people and we don't have anything against it," the CM said, adding that they can do it on any day, but should not gather too many people. The event for formal takeover as KPCC President was planned for June 14, after it was postponed twice in the past- on May 31 and June 7- due to COVID-19 related restrictions in place.

    Shivakumar on June 5 had written to Yediyurappa, seeking to organise an event on June 14 to mark official take over party's headquarters here in the presence of around 150 senior leaders, and the event would be telecast live and party workers at about 7,800 locations across the state were to take an oath and read the preamble of the Constitution.

    However, replying to Shivakumar on Tuesday, a Revenue Department official in a letter pointing out that large public gatherings or congregations continue to remain prohibited, under the new set of guidelines issued by the Centre, said, " hence the request cannot be considered." Irked by the denial of permission, despite written assurance about following all precautionary measures, Congress leaders had hit out at the BJP accusing it of "double standard".

    Meanwhile, thanking Yediyurappa for permission to go ahead with the event, Shivakumar on Thursday said he would speak to senior party leaders and decide about a new date for organising the event.

    He said, "it cannot be held on June 14, as I have already informed party men about rescheduling the event after the government denied permission." The event will be organised as per the guidelines, taking all precautionary measures, he said, adding that "I will announce a new date soon."

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