BJP state executive meeting ends, but rift continues

Ball is in the court of central leadership: Shobha Karandlaje

BJP state executive meeting ends, but rift continues

The two-day BJP state executive committee meeting in Mysuru concluded on Sunday with no sign of any patch-up of the running feud between senior leaders B S Yeddyurappa and K S Eshwarappa.

The two leaders were so near and yet so far on the concluding day too. They sat on the dais with BJP national general secretary P Muralidhar Rao between them at a session on the drought situation in the state but did not speak to each other. The rift, combined with the lack of interest on the part of the state leadership to usher in unity in the party, seem to have demoralised the rank and file of the party at least to some extent.

However, Eshwarappa in his address stated that Yeddyurappa is like his brother and the chief ministerial candidate of the party. Yeddyurappa on his part said he endorsed Eshwarappa's views that the party should also contribute in mitigating the suffering of the people reeling under drought. However, party insiders do not attach much importance to the statements as they were made because of the presence of Rao. This was evident as there were no concrete plans drawn at the state executive to achieve the target of ‘Mission 150’ and winning 25 plus seats in the next Assembly and Lok Sabha polls, respectively.
The central leadership has set the state unit a target of winning 150 seats in the 2018 Assembly polls and more than 25 of the 28 seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

BJP state general secretary Shobha Karandlaje said the central leadership will sort out all differences in the party soon. “I do not want to take any more questions on the issue. But the ball is in the court of the central leadership,” she said at a press conference following the conclusion of various sessions at the state executive.

She did admit that the factionalism in the party might have had psychological effect on BJP functionaries but it had not dampened their spirit to work for the party. “I do admit that it has disheartened the party workers but everything will be set right soon,” she added.

The meeting also witnessed a growing voice that Sangolli Rayanna Brigade, a forum of OBCs  and Dalits with which Eshwarappa has been associating himself should be dissolved. “Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said no parallel organisation should operate in his name. When that is the case, I feel Brigade should be dissolved,” Shobha said to a query. The same view was endorsed at a meeting of various units of the party.

 According to sources, there were murmurs of discontent from a section of the delegates when BJP national joint secretary B L Santhosh explained the party’s “Vistar”( expansion programme)  of deputing 10,000 party workers to various places for 15 consecutive days to spread the ideology of the party. “Who will look after our families if we stay away from them for 15 days,” the murmers went.

However, Yeddyurappa is said to have silenced them by placing his fingers on his lips. Yeddyurappa had recently blamed Santhosh for masterminding the rift in the party.

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