NEW DELHI: A change of guard is on cards in Karnataka. But all the players would have to wait till March 30 – the date when Budget session of the state assembly would conclude. Incidentally, election to the Rajya Sabha seats would also be held on that date.
This appeared to be the upshot of hectic parleys undertaken separately by former Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa and his protege-turned-competitor and incumbent Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda with the BJP top brass on Thursday. Both the leaders met party president Nitin Gadkari, L K Advani, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley and Rajnath Singh in back-to-back meetings.
BJP general secretary (organisation) Ram Lal, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley, BJP general secretary and chief spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad and general secretary in charge of Karnataka Dharmendra Pradhan were also present when Yeddyurappa held discussions with Gadkari. Emerging from the meeting, Yeddyurappa, flanked by Pradhan, said the party “will take the right decision”. “I am happy with the outcome of the meeting… I am confident the president will take the right decision in the interest of the party and the people of Karnataka,” he said.
Yeddyurappa has staked claim to the chief ministership after a High Court decision quashed a Lokayukta charge in an illegal mining case, on the basis of which he was removed from the post. Yeddyurappa has claimed the support of around 70 MLAs and 12 (of total 18) MPs from the state.