Bengaluru: The All India Congress Committee (AICC) president Rahul Gandhi disbanded the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) on Wednesday. An AICC release today said that the president and the working president will remain unchanged.

AICC general secretary KC Venugopal, who is also in-charge of Karnataka, announced the decision to dissolve the KPCC, which has over 170 office bearers.

When asked about the incident, Eshwara Khandre, working president of the KPCC, confirmed it and blamed it on the large size of the committee. “We will bring new faces into the committee and make it compact and effective. We had a discussion regarding this earlier, but then the Lok Sabha election came up. A formal letter was sent regarding the need to rebuild the party in the state. And the decision has been taken now.”

Khandre, however, denied it when asked if the decision was a result of the growing dissent in the party. Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Siddaramaiah is in Delhi for a meeting with Rahul Gandhi. And this decision comes soon after.

Malavika Avinash, the BJP spokesperson said, “The fact that the KPCC has been dissolved is no secret and the committee has been on an all-time low. It has won one out of 28 constituencies in the recently-contested Lok Sabha election. The way Congress, as part of the coalition government, has been acceding to the demands of the JD(S), has definitely led to their downfall. The rising voices of dissent with leaders like Ramalinga Reddy, Roshan Baig and RV Deshpande speaking ill is another reason."

The BJP member also went ahead to state that there is nobody to take responsibility for the failure. “Siddharamaiah has always been a divisive person. There has been disgruntlement amongst the party members and each has been speaking a different tone. We are just observers,” she said.

But the decision to dissolve the KPCC surprised many Congress leaders as they were expecting a replacement for Dinesh Gundu Rao and Eshwara Khandre in the committee owing to the drubbing in the general elections under their leadership.