State BJP goes all out to woo BSY

State BJP goes all out to woo BSY

The Karnataka unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has announced that it has no objection to B S Yeddyurappa becoming party president or chief minister.

The party, in its renewed efforts to retain the former chief minister in its fold, is despatching a delegation of senior leaders, led by Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar to meet central leaders on October 30, for convincing the latter to explore ways to ensure that Yeddyurappa does not desert the party. They are also not averse to Yeddyurappa getting a position of his choice.

The sudden U-turn in the party’s stand was articulated by BJP state unit president K S Eshwarappa while he interacted with reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of the party’s SC/ST morcha office-bearers here on Saturday.

It is learnt that cabinet ministers Basavaraj Bommai, Murugesh Nirani, C M Udasi and others, who are Yeddyurappa loyalists, are not willing to quit the BJP, while their allegiance to the former chief minister is unshaken. The ministers pressured Shettar to convince Yeddyurappa to remain in the BJP.  

Shettar and Deputy Chief Minister R Ashoka met Yeddyurappa on Friday. Yeddyurappa reportedly told them that he found no reason to stay back after all the “humiliation” he had faced, thanks to some leaders in Delhi and the State. Shettar reportedly “had no answer” to some of the questions raised by Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurappa is planning to hold a meeting of party MLAs and ministers, who are loyal to him, on October 31 in Bangalore.  BJP leaders, especially Eshwarappa, are not confident enough of taking on the Opposition in the next Assembly elections due in April.

With BJP national president Nitin Gadkari, facing corruption charges, the party will face an uphill task in the elections. The central leaders may be of little help for the poll campaigning in the State. Hence, the State BJP leaders want Yeddyurappa, who has been the face of the BJP for the last four decades, to remain in the party.

So far, Eshwarappa had distanced himself from Yeddyurappa. Both had stopped sharing dais in meetings.

On Saturday, Eshwarappa down­played the rift between pro- and anti-Yeddyurappa camps. He said the central leaders in Delhi would requested to persuade Ye­dd­yurappa to remain in the BJP.

“It is the wish of party workers, leaders and the common man to see that Yeddyurappa remains with the BJP. He is a mass leader. Our stand will be conveyed to national leaders L K Advani, Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj and Nitin Gadkari. I have confidence that Yeddyurappa will not leave the party. Anyhow, the leaders in Delhi will  to take a final call,” he said.

Eshwarappa will be in the team that will meet the central leaders, along with ministers Govind Karjol, Basavaraj Bommai and Umesh Katti.

Yeddyurappa later confirmed that Shettar and others met him on Friday to request him to give up his decision to float a new party.

“But I am clear about my plans. I am severing my ties with the BJP. Eshwarappa is issuing statements only to create confusion among the workers,” he added.

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