Gadkari puts BSY on notice

Gadkari puts BSY on notice

BJP national chief dares Yeddyurappa to split party; stands by DVS

Not yielding to B S Yeddyurappa’s deadline-politics of seeing himself back in the chief minister’s saddle, BJP national president Nitin Gadkari on Friday categorically said that those who did not respect the party ideology had no place in the organisation and those who wanted to quit or split the party could do so.

While addressing the chintana-manthana baithak of the State party unit here, Gadkari also ruled out dislodging Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda to accommodate Yeddyurappa, while not making any promise to him before cutting short his stay here.
“D V Sadananda Gowda is leading the party-government in the State. There is no question of changing his leadership,” Gadkari declared after inaugurating the baithak at a resort on the outskirts of Bangalore.

Targeting the sulking, fretting and fuming Yeddyurappa at the meeting, Gadkari reportedly told his Karanataka party colleagues that those who wanted to part ways with the BJP “could do so today itself instead of tomorrow if they are not ready to follow the organisation’s principles.”

Gadkari, who surprised state leaders by his tough talk, is learnt to have said that protecting the BJP’s ideology has been an integral part of the party since its inception.
There was no place for caste politics and in the party there was only one caste i.e., the BJP. Efforts to break the party by playing the caste card will not be tolerated because the party believed in collective leadership and not one upmanship, he warned.

Claiming that the party was built with “great difficulty” in Karnataka, the BJP national president told partymen that efforts to bring disrepute to the organisation would not be tolerated. He sent out a clear signal that money-making and excessive spending would also not be tolerated, at a time when the BJP has taken on the Congress with fighting corruption as its main plank.

Making it clear that Yeddyurappa was in his sights, Gadkari told the meeting that a party worker could be pardoned if he made a mistake and repented. But if such partymen continue committing the same mistake, then such “mahatmas” have no place in the outfit.

Let alone getting back the chief minister’s chair, Yeddyurappa could not even carry out his plans to force his followers to walk out of the baithak after Gadkari’s inaugural address. Getting wind of Yeddyurappa’s plan to sabotage the two-day meeting, the pro-Sadananda Gowda camp ensured Gadkari wound up the meeting within two hours.
On Thursday, Yeddyurappa set February 27 as the deadline for the central leadership to reinstate him as the chief minister after ousting Gowda. The party has reiterated that the land scam-hit Yeddyurappa will be accommodated only after he is cleared of all charges.

Even before reaching the baithak, Yeddyurappa realised that his demand would not be met by Gadkari. In an early morning meeting with Gadkari, Yeddyurappa realised that Gowda will continue as chief minister.  

However, Gadkari did promise a suitable position for Yeddyurappa before the next year’s Assembly elections. He tried mollifying Yeddyurappa by directing him to meet him in Delhi on March 3 when a meeting of the Karnataka core group will be held that day.  

Soon after the meeting, Yeddyurappa was seen leaving the hotel in a huff.  After the baithak, he rushed back to his residence and remained closeted with 17 to 20 legislators, including Basavaraj Bommai, Premachandra Sagar, Aravind Limbavali and Shobha Karandlaje among others.

The BJP central leadership’s tough stand has come as a major set back to the Lingayat strongman who has been desperately trying to regain the chief minister’s post. He had made a similar aborted attempt to oust Gowda last month and had set January 14 as the deadline for the party to fulfill his demand.

This time around he played the caste factor by mustering the support of long-time foe Jagadish Shettar. Yeddyurappa had also charged Sadananda Gowda of dancing to the tunes of JD(S) chief H D Deve Gowda.

But Sadananda Gowda, along with the State party President K S Eshwarappa, succeeded in outsmarting Yeddyurappa, gaining the confidence of the party leadership.

So much so that Gadkari refused to accept that Yeddyurappa had set any deadline and claimed that the BJP’s State unit was united.