A flurry of appointments to various statutory boards and corporations continued on Wednesday, giving flight to rumours of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s likely exit.
Over the past few days, the administration appointed or nominated 53 people seen as Yediyurappa loyalists as chairpersons, directors and ex-officio members at different boards and corporations.
On Wednesday, 20 people were appointed or nominated, adding to 33 on Tuesday.
Chief ministers usually appoint MLAs to boards and corporations to mollify them. But despite pressure from ministerial aspirants, Yediyurappa picked only three legislators while doling out positions in boards: Duryodhan Aihole (Raibag), S R Vishwanath (Yelahanka) and B C Nagesh (Tiptur).
The appointments started after Yediyurappa’s meeting with BJP national general secretary (organisation) B L Santhosh on Monday. Soon after the meeting, Yediyurappa allocated Rs 500 crore to the new Veerashaiva-Lingayat Development Corporation.
Some see the appointments as Yediyurappa’s attempt at one-upmanship against the party leadership for delaying his Cabinet expansion. “Such appointments are the CM’s discretion,” a source said.
Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah wondered if Yediyurappa was on his way out going by the slew of appointments. “Maybe it is guaranteed that he is going,” he said. The BJP has denied Yediyurappa is being removed.
Meanwhile, the appointment of M Rudresh -- said to be close to the CM -- as chairman of Karnataka Rural Infrastructure Development Ltd has raised eyebrows. A house committee recommended a probe against him in the NICE corridor project.
Also, former Kundgol MLA Siddanagouda Ishwaragouda Chikkanagouda, the new chief of the Karnataka State Agricultural Produce Processing and Export Corporation, is Yediyurappa’s relative.