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State BJP President Yeddyurappa may contest assembly polls from North Karnataka

The former chief minister took this decision in the interest of the party after the central leadership suggested him to contest from North Karnataka.

Published: 17th September 2017 06:11 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th September 2017 08:09 AM   |  A+A-

BJP Karnataka president B S Yeddyurappa

By Express News Service

BENGALURU: Even as Congress tries to undo BJP’s Veerashaiva-Lingayat vote bank, the latter is doing everything they can to derail the grand old party’s plans by fielding BJP State President BS Yeddyurappa from a suitable Linagayat-dominated constituency in northern Karnataka. BJP  National President Amit Shah has conveyed his plan to Yeddyurappa, who would be compelled to give up his four decade long political association with his Shikaripura constituency.

With Congress leaders supporting the agitation for a separate religion tag for Veerashaiva-Lingayat community, BJP is facing a threat to its vote bank, which is largely concentrated in northern Karnataka. As the agitation has induced a rift within the community, BJP has maintained a studied silence as any move could damage its poll  prospects. Shah is reportedly convinced that BJP’s ‘Mission 150’ cannot be achieved without a massive mandate in northern Karnataka, the party’s traditional bastion. Fielding Yeddyurappa from one of the constituencies in northern Karnataka may boost the party in the region.

I am willing: Yeddyurappa

“Our party national leadership has conveyed its desire to field me from northern Karnataka. I will think about it and take a decision. I will abide by whatever decision the party high command takes,” Yeddyurappa said while speaking to mediapersons, here on Sunday.

Party  strategists expect big gains for BJP in 10 to 12 districts in northern  Karnataka, if Yeddyurappa is fielded from the region. It would also send a strong message to the ticket aspirants in the party, that they should  be ready for any sacrifice during distribution of party tickets because even the BJP state president is ready to move out of his political  backyard.

‘Badami likely choice’

According  to party sources, Yeddyurappa is likely to enter the fray in the 2018 Assembly election from one of the constituencies in Bagalkot district. Badami is being seen as the likely choice. This would be the first poll test for Yeddyurappa outside Shivamogga district. He has represented Shikaripura constituency six times in the Assembly. Currently, he is a member of Lok Sabha from  the Shivamogga constituency.



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