Karnataka BJP MP revolts against Yeddyurappa


Bangalore : B.S. Yatnal, a ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP in Karnataka, Monday raised the banner of revolt against the party’s state leadership and predicted the fall of the Yeddyurappa government after the Lok Sabha elections.

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“The BJP government in the state led by B.S. Yeddyurappa will fall three months after the Lok Sabha elections,” Yatnal, an MP from Bijapur, said at Tumkur, about 70 km from here.

He was speaking to the media after a meeting with the party’s Tumkur MP S. Mallikarjunaiah, who has been denied ticket to contest in the upcoming parliamentary polls.

Criticising the party’s state leadership for it’s “operation lotus” mission to induct leaders from other political parties into the BJP, Yatnal said such a strategy would only harm the party’s interests in the long term.

“Tickets for the Lok Sabha elections should be given to those who worked for years to strengthen the party and not to new entrants. Luring others with pecuniary benefits and positions will damage the party’s prospects,” Yatnal said.

Accusing Chief Minister Yeddyurappa of indulging in dynastic politics by fielding his son B.S. Raghavendra as the party’s candidate in the prestigious Shimoga parliamentary constituency, Yatnal said senior party leaders like Mallkarjunaiah were ignored while new entrants and inexperienced members were given preference.

“Yeddyurappa is doing just the opposite. After criticising dynastic politics of the Congress for over two decades, he is doing the same by securing a ticket to his eldest son,” Yatnal said.

Yatnal is considered to be close to party’s general secretary and former union minister H.N. Anatha Kumar, who is reported to have opposed Raghavendra’s nomination.

Anguished by the unsavoury developments in the party over the selection of candidates for the ensuing general elections, Yatnal said differences, infighting and factional politics in the party would send wrong signals to the electorate, damaging the party’s prospects in the polls.

“If the party wants to return to power at the centre by winning as many parliamentary seats, then the state leadership should be pragmatic and prudent to field only winnable candidates and not on other considerations,” Yatnal added.

In the 2004 elections, the BJP had won 18 of the 28 seats, while the Congress got eight and Janatal Dal-Secular two.

The BJP has already nominated 20 candidates for the 2009 elections, while the opposition Congress and JD-S are yet to finalise their nominees.