MYSURU: The names of all three MLAs who switched parties and joined the BJP last year, figure in the list sent to the party bosses shortlisting candidates for the Legislative Council election. There is no caste barrier either, as all three belong to the Kuruba community.
Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa had promised A H Vishwanath, M T B Nagaraj and R Shankar, who played an important role in BJP coming to power, that they would be made MLCs. Yediyurappa appears to have brushed aside all resistance and grumbling in the party and reportedly told the core committee about the promise made to the Congress-JDS coalition rebels.
The three have pinned their hopes on Yediyurappa, known for his adamant stand and keeping his promises. On many occasions, they have said that they have full faith in him. The inclusion of all the three has cheered the defectors who brought down the coalition government.
It is not an easy task to assure all the 15 defectors positions, party tickets and ministerial berths, Despite many odds, Yediyurappa managed to induct 10 into the ministry, defuse tension within the party, and again, include the three MLAs in the probables’ list. He has proved that his word still counts.
Vishwanath, who faced strong opposition within the party, said, “Yediyurappa is our only hope and the only one who can convince the party bosses.” A senior BJP leader, also an aspirant for the Council ticket after his four decades of service, said that one could bank on Yediyurappa any time.
BJP MP V Srinivasa Prasad said that Yediyurappa knows what he has assured and will deliver to Vishwanath and others. Though Deputy Chief Minister Ashwath Narayan said that only Shankar was assured of a berth, minister S T Somashekar said the DCM was not part of the committee which took the decision.
Political commentator Prof Harish Ramaswamy said that Yediyurappa recommending these three names involves trust and leadership. “He wanted to send a strong signal that he is still the leader and also wants a stable government. It is to be seen whether the BJP bosses will accept the recommendation as they also wanted to take control of the government and the party instead of giving it a free run.”