Dumped by Sushma, Reddys rope in Gadkari

Gadkari and his wife will take a special flight from New Delhi and will land at Jindal airport in Vidyanagar and then drive to residence of B K Srinivasmurthy, a doctor, where the pooja will be held, sources said.  He  will also attend a mass marriage programme before returning to Delhi.

BJP senior leader Sushma Swaraj, who had made it annual ritual to attend Varamahalakshmi pooja organised by Karunakara Reddy and Janardhana Reddy  - decided to keep off the leaders facing grave charges of illegal mining, this year.

Waning influence

Swaraj has been attending the pooja programme since 1999 after she unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha elections against AICC president Sonia Gandhi.

The Reddys, who have been camping in New Delhi after they were left out when Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda inducted 21 members into Cabinet on August  8, succeeded in persuading Gadkari to attend the programme.

The party central leadership did not consider their request to induct a couple of their nominees during the second round of Cabinet expansion on Thursday.

Gadkari, it is said, was not averse to inducting B Sriramulu, the associates of Reddys, as minister in the Sadananda Gowda Cabinet. But, the State leaders are said to have thwarted his plans.

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