Kalyana K'taka MLAs fume ahead of Cabinet expansion

Kalyana K'taka MLAs fume ahead of Cabinet expansion

The MLAs have demanded the induction of one more legislator from the region into the Cabinet

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa. (Credit: DH Photo)

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa is facing fresh trouble over the expansion of his Cabinet with a group of legislators hailing from Kalyana Karnataka (Hyderabad-Karnataka) region seeking more representation to address regional imbalance.

Also, the possible induction of former minister C P Yogeeshwar - who lost the 2018 polls - has triggered dissidence among BJP MLAs who allege that Kalyana Karnataka, Coastal Karnataka and Mysuru regions had been ignored.

At present, only one MLA from Kalyana Karnataka region - Prabhu Chauhan from Aurad in Bidar - is a minister in Yediyurappa’s Cabinet. 

Some Kalyana Karnataka MLAs got into a huddle in the city on Monday to exert pressure on Yediyurappa.

“More MLAs will be part of the meeting which will be held on Wednesday. The purpose is to draw the CM’s attention to the imbalance caused in the Cabinet in terms of regional representation,” former minister Narasimha Nayak (Rajugouda), who represents Shorapur in Yadgir, said.

The MLAs, during the meeting, also noted that under-representation of the region in the Cabinet could amount to violation of Article 371(J), which accords special status to Kalyana Karnataka.

That Yogeeshwar, who lost the 2018 polls from Channapatna, might be inducted has irked those within the BJP. Yogeeshwar played a key role in poaching Congress-JD(S) legislators. A ministerial berth will be seen as a reward for that.

The chief minister’s political secretary M P Renukacharya admitted if Yogeeshwar is inducted, there will be two ministers in the Cabinet who lost the 2018 elections, the other being Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi. “This will hurt senior MLAs and others who won the election,” he said, adding that the matter will be discussed with the CM.

Losers mellow down

Meanwhile, disqualified legislators A H Vishwanath and M T B Nagaraj appeared to have mellowed down. The duo who lost the recent bypolls was vocal about being made ministers, especially after Yediyurappa said only the winners will make the cut.

According to sources, Vishwanath and Nagaraj have been assured Cabinet berths after they are elected MLCs in May or June. Another disgruntled MLA Mahesh Kumathalli, who may not make it to the Cabinet, is said to have been pacified after the CM assured him chairmanship of a powerful board or corporation.

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