BJP general secretary P Muralidhar Rao, who has been working in Karnataka for the last six months, spoke to Liz Mathew. Excerpts:
How do you see the verdict?
The verdict is clear, it is in public domain. We have gone to the Governor, appealing to him to invite us to form the government as BJP is the single largest party.
But BJP still needs the numbers to form the government.
The mandate is understood by the people there and everyone out there. It is against the Congress. It’s true that we have not got majority. How can you say it was not against the Congress? Now, the Congress is trying to change the mandate. BJP will not allow the mandate to be changed.
But in the recent past, Governors in Manipur and Goa ignored the single largest party.
A Governor is within his right to invite a party or combination, based on the specific situation, keeping in mind the stability factor also. A stable government does not mean putting the numbers together. There has to be logical ground also.
Now that the BJP has staked claim, what would you offer to the JD(S) at a time when the Congress has already offered the CM’s post.
We have just staked claim. Now, we will sit and discuss our strategy. We have not offered anything yet. Let the Governor invite us. Then we will reveal our strategy.
What would be the impact of this verdict on the BJP’s prospects in southern states? Do you think it would make BJP more favourable to possible allies?
The message has gone out that we have dislodged Congress. A Congress-mukt Karnataka has been created. We have achieved it. BJP has emerged as the most important party in the south too. The victory itself speaks volumes.
Well, it depends on them. If they join hands with BJP, they can share power. Or else they will have pain.
How do you read today’s results with regard to the 2019 Lok Sabha polls?
The message is very clear. BJP is on a winning spree and it gets this endorsement from the people periodically.
What were the factors in favour of BJP?
There were multiple factors. The overriding factor was Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s charisma. That factor has activated every action and every other factor.