BJP chief Amit Shah on Friday called on the erstwhile royal family of Mysuru in what is seen as an effort to draw their support for the BJP in the forthcoming assembly elections in the state. The family of Mysuru’s former ruler Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar still enjoys a great deal of goodwill among the people and the BJP is hoping to tap into this in a region where 65 of the 224 assembly seats are at stake, but the party lacks a strong leadership.
Shah, accompanied by BJP state chief B S Yeddyurappa, called on the Wodeyar family, which is represented now by the titular king — Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wodeyar and his mother Pramoda Devi Wodeyar — at the family’s private palace in Mysuru. “Had a wonderful meeting with Maharaja Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar, Rajamatha Pramoda Devi Wadiyar and Maharani Trishika Kumari Devi of the Royal Family of Mysuru,” Shah said in a tweet following the meeting.
Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who is the key leader from the Mysuru region, has not enjoyed good relations with the royal family on account of his opposition to the according of royal status to the family despite abolishment of privy purses in 1971 through the 26th constitutional amendment.
Sources in the BJP said the party has been making efforts to convince Yaduveer to take the political plunge with the BJP in the forthcoming state polls. The young erstwhile royal, however, rejected rumours of his entry into politics recently, saying, “I am not interested in politics.”
The previous scion of the Mysuru royal family, Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wodeyar, was elected to Parliament on four occasions from Mysuru on Congress tickets. He also lost two polls on Congress and BJP tickets.