Sriramulu returns to BJP

Sriramulu returns to BJP

Sriramulu returns to BJP

The BJP on Friday rolled out the red carpet for B Sriramulu who had rebelled against the party and founded the BSR Congress.

The party is so keen to field him from Bellary for the Lok Sabha election next month that it has overridden its national leader Sushma Swaraj’s recommendation not to bring him back to the party fold.

Justifying the hurried induction of Sriramalu, State BJP president Pralhad Joshi said: “We are in the midst of the election season and we are finalising the candidates for the three constituencies of Bellary, Hassan and Mandya. As a result, we decided to induct Sriramalu on Friday itself.”

However, the BJP and Sriramalu were unable to give a clear picture of whether he was still a BSR Congress MLA. When asked if he had resigned from as an MLA, so as not to attract the anti-defection law, as his party was not merging with the BJP, Sriramalu said the legal aspects were being looked into by a team of experts and soon a decision would be taken in this regard.

While senior leaders sidestepped questions on his re-entry, sources said Sriramulu had just made it to the party, but not taken a membership so as to avoid any legal complications under the anti-defection law. Before filing his nomination, he would have to sever ties with the BSR Congress, for which he is the president. He would have to also resign as an MLA, though technically he is considered as an independent MLA. While the BJP has maintained that it has received clearance from its parliamentary board and president Rajnath Singh to re-induct Sriramulu, Sushma’s recommendation not to take him back had been overlooked.

“It is true Sushma Swaraj had made known her views openly. However, after a meeting of the parliamentary board, the BJP inducted Sriramalu into the party,” said Joshi.

Sriramalu said it was his “ego” that forced him to begin a new party, but now, with Narendra Modi as the prime ministerial candidate, he had decided to return to the BJP.

On whether he still considered Sushma as his ‘thayi’ (mother), the Bellary MLA said: “I will always consider her as my mother. I considered her as my mother then, I do so today, and till the day I die.”