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In the JD(S)-Congress government, the rebels will not make the cut

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There is a close eye being kept on the 3 JD(S) rebels who had joined the Congress ahead of the Karnataka assembly elections. The question is will they be given a Cabinet berth or a portfolio in the H D Kumaraswamy led JD(S)-Congress government.

In the JD(S)-Congress government, the rebels will not make the cut

Out of the seven rebels, 3 managed to retain their seats in the recently concluded elections. They in fact won with a comfortable margin.

The rebel lawmakers had resigned from Karnataka legislative assembly on March 24, a day after they cross-voted in favour of the Congress candidates in the Rajya Sabha biennial election in the state.

Of these legislators who contested on Congress ticket, three retained their seats, while four suffered defeat, the data showed.

R Akhanda Srinivasmurthy emerged victorious from Pulakeshinagar in Bengaluru district, defeating JD(S) candidate B Prasannakumar by 81,626 votes. Similarly, Zameer Ahmed Khan won from Chamrajpet in Bengaluru urban district. He defeated BJP's M Lakshminaraya by 33,137 votes. Also, Bheema Naik retained his Hagaribommanhalli seat in Bellary district by defeating BJP's K Nemiraja Naik by 7,232 votes.

However, HC Balakrishna lost his Magadi seat in Ramanagaram district to JD(S) candidate A Manjunath by 51,425 votes, while N Chaluvarayaswamy failed to secure his Nagamangala seat in Mandya district and was defeated by Congress' Suresh Gowda by 47,667 votes. AB Ramesha Bandisiddegowda too could not retain Srirangapattana seat in Mandya district, where JD (S) candidate Ravindra Srikantaiah won by 43,688 votes.

Similarly, Iqbal Ansari lost his Gangawati seat in Koppal district to BJP's P Eshwarappa Munavalli by 7,973 votes.

Deve Gowda the JD(S) supremo who calls the shots has ensured that the three candidates are kept out of the list. The Congress also at this juncture has not pushed for the names of any of these candidates as it could spell trouble for the coalition even before it takes off.

Gowda is in particular upset with Zameer Ahmed after he had a bitter falling out with H D Kumaraswamy. The former PM had vowed to defeat Ahmed at any cost. He had put honour and prestige to ensure that Ahmed was defeated. It was no different for Zameer Ahmed as well who had said in case he is defeated, he would cut off his head and place it at Gowda's feet.

Gowda is not the one to either forget or forgive. It was a well known fact that when the Congress and JD(S) formed a pact post the results, Siddaramaiah a one time JD(S) man and a Gowda prodigy would be the first casualty.

A Congress source said that it is highly unlikely that the rebels will be accommodated in the ministry. There are several other aspirants too and Gowda would never approve of any proposal to include the rebels. They are likely to be placated in the party with good posts, the Congress source also said.

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