BANGALORE/BELGAUM: Former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa’s efforts to enlist the support of his rival in the state BJP, Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister Jagadish Shettar have yielded no results with the latter refusing to commit on anything during a meeting between the two Lingayat leaders on Tuesday night.
Facing an adverse situation that could even jeopardise his place in the BJP, Yeddyurappa is desperate to show Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda his place. For this, he needs numbers.
With this in mind, Yeddyurappa invited Shettar to his residence on Tuesday and sought his support while inviting him to the luncheon meeting he has convened for party MLAs on Thursday.
It is said that during the meeting, Yeddyurappa asked Shettar to put the past behind and join him to ensure the party remained in the clutches of Lingayats.
“Supporting Sadananda Gowda’s candidature for the CM’s post was my biggest mistake. The time has come to rectify the mistake. You be with me,” Yeddyurappa reportedly told Shettar.
Yeddyurappa is also said to have given a clear hint that he would propose Shettar’s name if the on-going fight in the state BJP boils down to that. “Some of the Lingayat swamijis told me to support a Lingayat candidate for the CM’s post and I am only carrying out their orders,” he reportedly told Shettar.
On his part, Shettar gave a patient hearing to Yeddyurappa but remained non-committal. However, he is said to have accepted Yeddyurappa’s invitation to attend Thursday’s meeting.
“I will attend the meeting convened by Yeddyurappa as he has personally invited me,” Shettar told Express, while confirming his meeting with the former CM.
When asked if his name would be proposed in Thursday’s discussions for the post of Chief Minister, Shettar said, “I really don’t know what will transpire at the meeting.”