BSY loyalists lobby Modi for his return

Frustrated by BJP leadership’s delay in clearing former CM’s return,supporters knock on Modi’s door

Written by Express News Service | Bangalore | Published: September 3, 2013 2:40 am

Three BJP legislators considered close to former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa met BJP’s election campaign chief Narendra Modi in Ahmedabad Monday and discussed the possibility of expediting the return of Karnataka Janata Party leader to the party.

Before leaving for Ahmedabad in the morning,the legislators —former CM D V Sadananda Gowda,Basavaraj Bommai and Arvind Limbavalli — had said they would discuss a host of issues,including Yeddyurappa’s return to the BJP in time for Modi’s impending visit to Karnataka.

After the meeting,Gowda said,“We discussed all issues pertaining to the growth of the BJP in Karnataka and what to do in this direction.” On Yeddyurappa’s return,he said,“It is an internal matter of the party that has to be decided by the national leadership.”

Gowda has emerged as one of the strongest votaries for Yeddyurappa’s return despite being at loggerheads with him while in power.

Modi had been scheduled to visit in Karnataka on September 22 but the program was cancelled due to a number of unresolved issues,sources in the BJP said. His supporters have been trying to bring Yeddyurappa,who is considered a leader of the Lingayats,the largest community in Karnataka,back into the BJP ever since the party lost the assembly election in May. The BJP,which is hunting for numbers in its quest to return to power in Delhi,believes Yeddyurappa’s return is crucial to improve its performance in Karnataka.

Yeddyurappa resigned from the BJP last year and launched the KJP,a move that was partly responsible for the BJP’s defeat. Consensus on Yeddyurappa’s return has been growing in the Karnataka BJP though the party’s national leadership hasn’t shown much inclination. Yeddyurappa himself is keen to return; one of his confidantes,in fact,had told senior BJP leaders Rajnath Singh and Arun Jaitley two months ago that the former chief minister was ready even for an unconditional return.

The coldness of the leadership to Yeddyurappa’s return has frustrated his supporters in the BJP. They are now hoping for Modi to intervene to expedite his return,the sources said.

The delay in the merger of the KJP with the BJP has been attributed to senior leaders’ apprehension that it would not go down well with L K Advani,who has opposed the move on the ground that it would be inconsistent with the BJP’s anti-corruption message. Sources said that there was also opposition within the BJP to the re-induction of Yeddyurappa loyalists Shobha Karandlaje and Dhananjay Kumar.

ALSO ON Meeting AGENDA

BANGALORE: One of the other issues the BJP legislators are believed to have raised with Modi is the alleged unilateralism of key RSS leader Santhoshji in setting up the Gujarat chief minister’s visit to Karnataka. “The visit of Modi on September 22 was fixed at a meeting where senior leaders were not called and this has upset some leaders,” BJP sources said. Santhoshji and Yeddyurappa,incidentally, are known to be at loggerheads since the former chief minister’s exit from the BJP. Sadananda Gowda,however,denied any rift in the BJP over the RSS leader. “No date has been fixed for Modiji’s visit. All reports of differences are rumours,” he claimed. ENS

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