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Old rivalry between Yatnal, Niranis takes an ugly turn

According to sources, Yediyurappa is not keen on inducting Murugesh Nirani into his cabinet in order to accommodate new MLAs.

Published: 17th January 2020 06:05 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th January 2020 06:05 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

VIJAYAPURA/BAGALKOT: The tussle between MLAs Basangouda Patil Yatnal and Murugesh Nirani, two popular Lingayat leaders from North Karnataka and also close confidants of Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, seems to be taking an ugly turn. This comes in the backdrop of Lingayat seer Vachanananda Swamy’s threat to the CM over the neglect of Nirani and the dominant Veerashaiva Lingayat-Panchamsali community by the BJP government.

The seer’s statement that the entire community would abandon Yediyurappa if he ignores Nirani has not gone down well with many Lingayat BJP leaders and supporters of Yediyurappa. Taking a shot at the Nirani brothers, Yatnal said that the Panchamsali community will not agree with the stance taken by the Niranis and Vachanananda.

A furious Sangamesh Nirani, MLC and brother of Murugesh Nirani, hit back at Yatnal today, stating that it was only due to Murugesh that Yatnal made his political revival.

Sangamesh said in Bagalkot that Yatnal had spoken ill about leaders such as Yediyurappa, Shobha Karandlaje, Jagadish Shettar, Pralhad Joshi, PM Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah when he was out of power. “I had to expose him for dragging our family into controversies. I warn him to refrain from it,’’ Sangamesh said.

Talking about Vachananda’s favouritism towards the Niranis, Yatnal told the media on Thursday that seers should focus on working for the poor and also strive to correct erring leaders. “Unfortunately, seers today are branded to one political outfit, leaving the devotees in a quandary,” he claimed, adding, “I will expose leaders like Niranis once cabinet expansion is over.”

The growing rivalry between the two Lingayat leaders has irked many community leaders. Lingayat leader Shivangouda Patil said the community must rally behind Yediyurappa, respecting his credentials as a leader. A tussle within the community would only send a bad message, he added.

According to sources, Yediyurappa is not keen on inducting Murugesh into his cabinet in order to accommodate new MLAs.



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