Debacle may hit reshuffle plans

Bypolls fallout: Internecine difference in BJP on rise; Cong introspects

Debacle may hit  reshuffle plans

Returning Officer Amaresh Naik handing over the certificate to JD(S) candidate Aruna Patil Revoor who won the bypoll in Gulbarga South on Thursday. JD(S) State president H D Kumaraswamy seen rejoicing the success of party candidate. DH photoFor one, Gulbarga South constituency had witnessed aggressive campaigning by Chief Minister  Yeddyurappa himself, yet, JD(S) nominee Aruna, wife of deceased MLA Chandrasekhar Patil Revoor won by a comfortable margin against BJP’s Sashil Namoshi.

According to party sources, the failure of the party to retain the seat will provide enough ammunition for the Chief Minister’s detractors in preventing him from picking his favourites. Besides, Sashil Namoshi was nominated by Yeddyurappa. The only saving grace has been the party’s victory in the Kadur Assembly segment. Yeddyurappa wants Shobha Karandlaje and V Somanna back in the Cabinet. Party State president K S Eshwarappa wants to provide opportunities to party’s new faces.

Eshwarappa told reporters here on Thursday that Cabinet reshuffle was on the cards by month-end indicating that the Chief Minister had no free hand in the matter. He also indicated that four to five ministers will be replaced. Top party leaders are likely to meet this weekend to discuss various issues. Various factions in the party are already working overtime to safeguard their interests.

In a recent development, eight ministers led by Excise Minister M P Renukacharya and several legislators formed a group pledging support to each other in case of any crises. The five independent MLAs in the Cabinet have identified themselves with this group. “We are ready to resign en masse if any one of us is removed from the Cabinet,” said a minister. Several senior legislators are rallying behind Eshwarappa and party National General Secretary Ananth Kumar. Bellary ministers, who have lost political prominence due to the recent developments, are trying to mobilise the support of Vokkaliga MLAs.

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