BENGALURU: On Sunday morning Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa left for Davos to attend the World Economic Forum with an aim to bring investments to the state. He told reporters before leaving that interactions had been fixed with 38 industrialists and investors. “I will assure industrialists and investors that the government will give all necessary facilities within our limits,” the CM said.Yediyurappa also said the cabinet will be expanded within two days of his return from Davos on January 24.
Meanwhile, the 11 new BJP MLAs are in a sulk as the cabinet expansion is getting delayed further and they don’t know who will be in or who out. To bolster their case, a delegation of these cabinet aspirants led by Gokak MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi met party national president and Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Hubballi on Saturday. Though the aspirants maintained that theirs was a courtesy call, it was more of a gentle reminder to Amit Shah that ministerial berths were promised to them.
The whole process seems to be stuck because it is not clear whether it will be a cabinet expansion or a reshuffle. For, on Saturday, when Yediyurappa mooted the idea of dropping a few ministers and inducting fresh faces, Amit Shah apparently didn’t seem to be convinced about this proposal. Shah is said to have asked Yediyurappa to meet him in Delhi to discuss the expansion plans in detail once he returns from Davos.
Now, Yediyurappa is back to where he started — finding a suitable time to discuss the cabinet expansion with the central leadership in New Delhi. Albeit this time, it can happen only after he returns from Davos.
“I was able to discuss cabinet expansion with Amit Shah for about half an hour amid his tight schedule. He responded positively to the proposal. Cabinet will be expanded within two days after I return from Davos,” Yediyurappa said.The statement comes after the new BJP MLAs met Shah in Hubballi.
Shettar bound for Davos meet with CM
Now the wait seems to be at least a week longer for them with the Chief Minister busy for the next four days at the World Economic Forum. These MLAs have been waiting in line to take oath as ministers since December 9, 2019 when the results of the bypolls to 15 assembly constituencies were announced.
Apart from officials, the personal staff and Industries minister Jagadish Shettar will accompany Yediyurappa on the tour. A host of BJP leaders including Deputy Chief Minister Dr Ashwath Narayana, Minister Prabhu Chavan, MP, and Yediyurappa’s sons B Y Raghavendra and B Y Vijayendra visited the Chief Minister to wish him luck before the journey.
Strength of promise
Currently there are 18 ministers, including the Chief Minister in the cabinet that has a sanctioned strength of 34. Yediyurappa had said repeatedly that 11 of the new BJP MLAs will be made ministers