Decisive BSY sacks three to induct six

Yeddyurappa and State BJP chief deny rebellion within party

Decisive BSY sacks three to induct six

Higher Education Minister Aravind Limbavali, who grew up in the party cadre, Sports, Youth Services and Textiles Minister Goolihatti Shekar, an Independent MLA identified with the Reddy brothers of Bellary, and Library and Adult Education Minister Shivanagouda Naik, who shifted loyalty from the Janata Dal (S) to the Bharatiya Janata Party, were sacked following their refusal to resign.

By giving the marching orders to Shekar and Naik, the chief minister also sent a strong message to the Reddys that they cannot continue to armtwist him into exercising his discretionary powers.

While the Reddys strongly opposed the ministry reshuffle, Yeddyurappa and State BJP chief K S Eshwarappa insisted there was no dissidence within the party.
Governor H R Bhardwaj has accepted the recommendation of the chief minister to drop the three ministers.

The governor will administer the oath of office on Wednesday at 9.30 am to the six new entrants to the Cabinet: Shobha Karandlaje, who is a known Yeddyurappa confidante, V Somanna, a staunch loyalist, S A Ramadas and C C Patil, both parliamentary secretaries, A Narayanswamy and C H Vijayashankar.
While for Karandlaje and Somanna it will be re-entry into the Cabinet, the other four will be first-time ministers.

With this the Cabinet will have the full strength of 34.
Among the new entrants, two are Lingayats, one each a Vokkaliga, a Brahmin, an OBC and a Scheduled Caste.

A number of party men, including the Reddys, have yet again raised the banner of revolt against Yeddyurappa for being firm on the Cabinet expansion and reshuffle. Interestingly, Eshwarappa and the chief minister spoke in unison when it came to sacking the ministers as well as the induction of the six. Shantha Kumar, national BJP leader and in-charge of the party in Karnataka, arrived here to participate in the swearing-in ceremony.

Yeddyurappa, going back on his words not to remove Independent MLAs who helped him come to power, sacked Goolihatti Shekar as he reportedly worked against the party’s candidate in the Kadur byelection.

Shekar, who on Monday threatened to commit suicide if he was sacked, did not venture into such dramatic act on Tuesday though a couple of his followers made futile attempts to end their lives. His supporters had come in large numbers to protest against the sacking but that had no impact on Yeddyurappa.  Shekar, who is into mining business, tried to take the support of ministers Janardhana Reddy and Karunakara Reddy who were instrumental in getting him into Cabinet. 

Another MLA, Shivanagouda Naik, who joined the BJP following the Reddys’ Operation Lotus, accused Yeddyurappa of breaching the trust and threatened to resign as a legislator. He, too, camped at the Reddys’ house through the day.
Aravind Limbavali, a one-time ABVP activist, did not throw tantrums after being sacked. Before the axe fell on him, he also camped at Reddys’ residence and argued that this was not the right time to expand the ministry.

Four ministers, including the Reddy brothers, Health Minister Sriramulu and RD&PR Minister Jagadish Shettar, stayed away from the State Cabinet meeting which was held at 5 pm. Before the meeting began, Shekar, Limbavali and Naik had already been shown the door. Shettar’s house once again turned a meeting hub for the disgruntled leaders though he did not skip the Cabinet meeting. Janardhana Reddy met Yeddyurappa to express his views on the political developments.
DH News Service

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