As the BJP central leadership wrestled with the political crisis gripping its state unit in Karnataka,Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda rushed to Delhi after being summoned by the party top brass,asserting he has been assured that there would be no change of guard.
Hours after B S Yeddyurappa,who is insisting on his reinstatement as chief minister,left for the national capital,Gowda,accompanied by Ministers S Suresh Kumar,Govind Karjol and S A Raveendranath,left here by a special aircraft.
“Party president Nitin Gadkari has assured (me) that there will be no leadership change. The discussions in Delhi would be centred around the causes that led to the defeat of BJP candidate in the Uudpi-Chikmagalur bye-election”,he told reporters before departure.
BJP suffered a major loss of face when the party lost the seat held by Gowda himself before he was appointed as the chief minister in August last year replacing Yeddyurappa after his indictment by Lokayukta report on illegal mining. Yeddyurappa,who has hardened his position on his reinstatement after getting a clean chit from the high court recently on illegal mining charges,attended the Assembly budget session on Wednesday after calling a temporary truce bowing to the party leadership which is working out a solution.
The state BJP strongman,who has claimed the support of 70 MLAs,had herded them at a resort here flexing his muscles for the past few days in his latest attempt for a comeback.
On his Delhi trip,Yeddyurappa was accompanied by some ministers loyal to him. Party sources said state unit BJP President K S Eshwarappa has also been asked to reach Delhi by the party leaders.
In another related development,about 10 BJP MLAs under the leadership of Minister for Municipal Administration Balachandra Jarkiholi met Governor H R Bhardwaj and discussed the prevailing political situation.
Jarkiholi,emerging out of Raj Bhavan,however,described his meeting with the Governor as a courtesy call and said they discussed the state budget.
Jarkiholi,an anti-Yeddyurappa camp leader,has been opposing replacing Gowda as chief minister and two days ago even threatened that he and 19 MLAs were ready to quit their assembly membership in such a situation.
He said he along with some MLAs would reach Delhi tomorrow to oppose change in Gowda’s leadership.
Yeddyurappa had been saying had he continued as Chief Minister,he would have presented the state’s budget for 2012-13 with Rs one lakh crore outlay. But Gowda,who is also holding the Finance portfolio,did it today.