MYSORE: In a ploy aimed at deepening the chasms in an already-divided BJP, MP A H Vishwanath of the Congress advised former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa on his birthday to walk out of the party and launch his political outfit.
The veteran Congress leader also appealed to leaders from Congress and erstwhile Janata Dal who are now with the BJP, to walk out in the interests of the state. “The religious mutts and Lingayats should realise what has happened to Yeddyurappa. It is unfortunate that the BJP high command has ignored him after benefiting from him over the last three years,” he added.
The MP urged leaders like D B Chandre Gowda, Basavaraju, Basavaraj Bommai and Somanna, who had earlier worked with former CMs D Devraj Urs, Ramakrishna Hegde and S M Krishna, to desert the government.
He claimed that the RSS has gone against the teachings of the social reformer Basavanna. “The RSS-BJP combine is against the SC/ST, OBC and minority communities. The RSS, which had earlier weakened leaders like Uma Bharthi and Kalyan Singh, is now targeting Gujarat CM Narendra Modi.”
Vishwanath, however, was quick to assert that the Congress was not fishing in troubled political waters; he chided the BJP for appeasing the Veerashaivas, only to later claim that the party is larger than the individual.
There may, after all, be reason to the MP’s statements.
The Congress is keen on winning the Udupi-Chikmagalur Lok Sabha bypoll and erase its bitter memory of a string of byelection defeats. The party’s posturing can also be seen as attempt to woo the Veerashaiva community, which has of late shied away from it.
‘This is De-Facto JD(S) Government’
Vishwanath termed the state government as a “de-facto JD(S) government”. He accused former minister H D Revanna of calling the shots and visiting the CM late in the evening to get files cleared. He accused JD(S) of being instrumental in appointing the Upa Lokaykuta. “The party is unusually silent over the chief minister.”