Deve Gowda goes on pilgrimage, makes Sinha wait


Bangalore : Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) president H.D. Deve Gowda Saturday flew to Tiruchirapalli in Tamil Nadu to visit temples as Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders met here to decide their strategy to woo him ahead of their proposed power transfer in Karnataka due Oct 3.

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Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy of JD-S, who is to make way for a BJP leader next week, was also away in Puducherry to attend a function to hand over houses for Tsunami victims built by a leading pontiff of Karnataka.

Both were expected back in the city in the evening.

A close aide of Deve Gowda said BJP vice president and Karnataka in-charge Yashwant Sinha, now in Bangalore, had not sought an appointment with the JD-S leader for a meeting to resolve the row over power transfer.

“So far we have not received any request for a meeting from BJP,” the aide told IANS.

Kumaraswamy’s spokesperson said the chief minister would be back later in the day after handing over the houses built by Suttur Math, a leading Math near Mysore.

Sinha arrived here late Friday evening for talks with the party’s Karnataka leaders after Deve Gowda called off talks with BJP on power transfer in the wake of murder attempt charges against his son and chief minister Kumaraswamy.

The charges were levelled by Tourism Minister B. Sriramulu of BJP, who claimed that he was shot at early this week when he was campaigning for civic body polls in Bellary district and the chief minister was behind the attempt on his life.

Deve Gowda Thursday called off the talks with BJP’s central leaders stating that Sriramulu’s charges against his son had vitiated the atmosphere. The minister withdrew his charges the next day. “I am only saying that atrocities were being committed on Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders and workers in the name of the chief minister,” he told reporters Friday.

Sinha is here to find a way to mollify Deve Gowda, a former prime minister, without loss of face for the party and ensure BJP gets its first chief minister in south India next week.