BJP plunges into crisis as BSY refuses to step down

BJP plunges into crisis as BSY refuses to step down

Yeddyurappa supporters find no reason to replace their leader

BJP plunges into crisis as BSY refuses to step down

Resorting to blatant brin­kmanship, Yeddyurappa clearly suggested to the central leadership that he would consider stepping down only if his demands were met.  

He demands are that the choice of his successor should be left to him and he be made party state unit president. Late on Thursday, Yeddyurappa hinted that he would step down on Sunday. Apparently, Yeddyurappa wants either Shobha Karandlaje or V S Acharya as his successor as a pre-condition to announce his resignation.

Party central leaders Rajnath Singh and Arun Jaitley had arrived in the city early Friday afternoon, expecting that the change of guard would be a smooth affair since Yeddyurappa had given July 31 as the date for his resignation.

But as they landed here, the chief minister was in a rebellious mood. Yeddyurappa minced no words in conveying his tough position to the senior leaders.

With the chief minister apparently going back on his word , the central leaders could not go ahead with a scheduled legislature party meeting in the evening which was to elect a successor to Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurappa has reportedly told the party that he should not be sacrificed on the basis of the Lokayukta’s report on illegal mining.

The central leadership is understood to have served an ultimatum on the defiant chief minister to resign by Saturday morning or face expulsion from the party.

In a day of high voltage political drama, the state unit got divided into pro- and anti-Yeddyurappa camps. The chief minister’s camp found no reason to replace its leader, arguing that the Lokayukta report could not be the basis for removing Yeddyurappa.

The camp followers alleged that the Lokayukta report was politically motivated. They exerted pr­essure on the central leaders to defer the legislature party meeting.  The other group which includes among others party state unit president K S Eshwarappa, declared that Yeddyurappa had no choice but to toe the line of party line. The group claimed that they have the support of 57 legislators. Yeddyurappa appeared so cut up with the central leadership  that he did not even step out of his official residence to receive Singh and Jaitley.

Eventually, the two central leaders came to the chief minister’s house to seek his resignation.

As the two leaders talked to the chief minister, scores of Yeddyurappa supporters insisted that their leader should be allowed to continue as he had the backing of a majority of legislators.

A number of ministers, legislators and Parliament members who were present told Singh and Jaitley to reconsider their decision to seek the resignation of Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurappa suspects a move by the central leadership to make his rival Ananth Kumar his successor, though there was no corroboration of this from the central leadership.  
Yeddyurappa’s supporters claimed that he has the backing of 74 of the 121 BJP legislators in the Assembly, 15 MLCs and 15 MPs. The two central leaders told the legislators that they can meet them individually.

However, the legislators told them that Yeddyurappa continued to be their leader.  
The two leaders left Yeddyurappa’s residence keeping the party leadership in New Delhi informed of the developments. They later held parleys with a few senior state leaders at a nearby star hotel where Singh and Jaitley are staying.

The two leaders will stay put in the city till a resolution of the crisis.