BJP in a fix on the way ahead in Karnataka

The BJP top brass is said to be in a dilemma on the Karnataka political developments. PTI

The BJP central leadership is said to be in a fix on how to proceed in Karnataka following the collapse of the Kumaraswamy-led government.

Top leaders are yet to make their mind on whether to ask the state leadership to stake claim to form the government or invoke President’s rule by keeping the assembly in suspended animation.

According to sources, the party is wary of the rebel MLAs loyalties. Since Speaker Ramesh Kumar, who disqualified three MLAs on Thursday, is buying time to decide on the fate of 13 rebel MLAs, the saffron party believes that staking claim to form the government could be a risky affair.

“The party leaders are not sure whether the remaining 13 rebel MLAs would really back them by abstaining if the BJP staked claimed to form the government,” said sources.

Another section among the central leadership favours imposing President’s rule and pass the Finance Bill in Parliament next week. 

At the same time, the party also feels that imposing President’s rule may hurt the party’s prospects in the state, especially among Lingayats. “Imposing President’s rule and denying the chief ministership to B S Yeddyurappa may send a wrong message to the community,” said sources. 

The party top brass, who have been holding discussions with legal experts, may take a decision in a day or two, sources said.

A group of state BJP leaders met party president Amit Shah on Thursday and urged him to take a decision at the earliest. But Shah did not reveal the next course of action.

The leaders who met Shah comprised Jagdish Shettar, Arvind Limbavali, Basavaraj Bommai, J C Madhuswamy and Yeddyurappa's son, Vijayendra.  

"We have explained the current political situation. We also sought the central leaders' direction on forming the government under the leadership of B S Yeddyurappa," he said.

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