BENGALURU: For a man who has refused to respond to any personal attack against him by own party members, BS Yediyurappa on Sunday created a flutter claiming that he would resign as chief minister if the party central leadership asks him to.
Replying to a question on attempts and lobbying from within the party to unseat him, Yediyurappa said that he will continue as chief minister only as long as the BJP central leadership has confidence in him. “The day they tell me to quit, I will. Then, I will involve myself in working for the welfare of the State.
There is no confusion from my end. They have given me a chance and I am trying to execute the responsibilities to the best of my abilities. The rest is left to the Central leadership,” he said, setting off a domino effect that led to a host of BJP leaders batting for him to continue as chief minister till the completion of his term.
Vijayapura MLA Basangouda Patil Yatnal has been relentless in his attack against Yediyurappa and his son and state party vice-president BY Vijayendra, while Water Resources Minister CP Yogeeshwara has openly made allegations of nepotism against the chief minister. But the BJP central leadership has not taken any action against the two leaders, triggering rumours of leadership change in the State.
“He is clearly hurt. Yatnal has been let off with a notice, RDPR Minister KS Eshwarappa writes a letter to Governor Vajubhai Vala alleging Yediyurappa’s highhandedness but doesn’t face any consequences, MLAs go and lobby against him in New Delhi and ministers like Yogeeshwara openly make personal attacks against him, but the party takes no action. It is affecting his morale,” said a source close to the chief minister.
‘Leadership talk hit administration in state’
The continuous buzz about leadership change has also impacted the administration in the state with officials not taking serious decisions, the source added. “There are threats against bureaucrats by party leaders, leaving them shaken,” the source said.
“There are mixed signals from the Central leadership. They are neither coming out in support of Yediyurappa, nor are they asking him to quit. His statement on Sunday was to convey to Delhi that it is now up to the Central leadership to decide what it wants. Even the BJP Karnataka social media pages do not appreciate or amplify the good work his government has done.
Some party leaders, though seem to back him in public, are in fact working against him. Naturally, he is upset,” a close aide of the chief minister said. “I don’t believe that there are no alternate leaders in Karnataka. There will always be an alternative in any State across the country. I will continue as CM till the central leadership has trust in me,” Yediyurappa said.