BJP warned of ‘disconnect’ ahead of crucial bypolls

The BJP has fielded 13 disqualified legislators for the 15 seats that face bypolls on December 5. 

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s Cabinet colleagues in-charge of the 15 constituencies going to bypolls have, in a report to the BJP state leadership, warned of a ‘disconnect’ between the party’s native workers and the supporters of the disqualified legislators. 

The BJP has fielded 13 disqualified legislators for the 15 seats that face bypolls on December 5. 

According to sources, Cabinet ministers appointed as in-charges for the constituencies have noted that the supporters of the disqualified MLAs are not willing to align with the party’s organisation, preferring to work separately for the bypolls. This, they say, might affect the outcome of the bypolls. 

“It will be pertinent to speak with the candidates (disqualified MLAs) or for party leaders to share the stage with them, which will help bring everyone together,” the ministers are said to have suggested. 

The report also points out that the party’s campaign had intensified to create a good atmosphere for the bypolls. 

Admittedly, the BJP faces a challenge in Hoskote where it faces a rebellion from its expelled Yuva Morcha secretary Sharath Bachegowda, who is contesting as an independent against the party’s candidate, disqualified legislator MTB Nagaraj. “There is no problem in our party, except in Hoskote, where we have expelled the rebel candidate,” BJP leader Shobha Karandlaje told reporters. 

“We’ve never done any injustice to the Bachegowda family,” she said, referring to Chikballapur MP B N Bachegowda, Sharath’s father. “He came to the BJP from the JD(S). We gave him the MLA ticket and made him a minister. He went on to get elected to the Lok Sabha,” she pointed out. 

The JD(S) has extended its support to Sharath and has not fielded a candidate in Hoskote. “Irony is that in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, H D Kumaraswamy contested against Bachegowda from Chikballapur. Now, when Bachegowda’s son is contesting the bypolls, Kumaraswamy has extended support,” Karandlaje said mockingly. 

 

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