BJP top brass backs BSY

Central leadership split on other demands put forward by rebels

BJP top brass backs BSY


The core committee, which met at the residence of party veteran L K Advani, discussed for over two hours the demands said to have been forwarded by the rebel group.
One of the main demands was dropping Rural Development Minister Shobha Karandlaje, a close confidant of Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa.

The other demands included appointing a home minister of the Reddys’ choice, giving Karnataka Assembly Speaker Jagadish Shettar a Cabinet post, forming a coordination committee, redistributing portfolios of ministers in charge of districts, reinstating the officials transferred in Bellary, a free hand to the Reddy brothers in flood relief work, withdrawing cases against Health Minister B Sriramulu, withdrawing Rs 1,000 tax imposed per truck carrying iron ore and transferring the CM’s principal secretary V P Baligar.
According to party sources, the leadership was split on the Reddys’ formidable demands. BJP president Rajnath Singh was said to have opposed many of the demands, saying that if they were accepted the leadership will have to address similar demands the other groups might come up with in the future.

The core committee, also attended by senior leaders Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley and Ananth Kumar, MP, remained tight-lipped over the outcome of the meeting. Rajnath Singh said there would be no change in leadership and added that the crisis would soon be resolved amicably.

The leadership was understood to have deputed Swaraj, known to be close to the Reddys, to convey the outcome of the core committee meeting to rebel leader and Tourism Minister Janardhana Reddy who, earlier in the day, met senior leaders here. On the other hand, Ananth Kumar held a meeting with State party president Sadananda Gowda.

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