Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president G Parameshwara, who weathered many a storm over the selection of candidates and the rebellion within the party, is now quietly confident of the Congress’ return to power in the State on its own steam.
On the campaign trail, he spoke to R K Ramakrishna Upadhya, on election-related issues.
Excerpts from the interview:
Are you being over-confident when you say that the Congress will form the next government?
No, I’m being realistic. I’m not over-confident. We have been working for this result for the past two-and-a-half years. People of the State have seen bad governance and they want to see a change. Even a small help, be it pension, a BPL card or drinking water, the government has not been able to provide. That’s why I’m confident people are looking for change.
Why is it that you have so few women candidates despite the fact that your leader Sonia Gandhi swears by 33 per cent reservation for women?
We have to go by winnability. In a male-dominated society, unless a lady candidate is very popular, very powerful and comes from a political family, it is very difficult for her to win the election. From the available list of candidates, we have considered about 10 of them. The number may not look encouraging. In future we will definitely take care of that and do our best.
It’s a Catch-22 situation. Unless you give women opportunities during elections, how will they come up?
Once the women’s reservation bill is passed, nobody will be able to ignore women and there will be level playing field. We are definitely committed to bringing 33 per cent reservation in Parliament.