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Gowda meets Shettar, tries to make peace before swearing-in

india Updated: Aug 04, 2011 12:11 IST
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DV Sadananda Gowda, who will be sworn in as Karnataka CM on Thursday, met rural development minisiter Jagadish Shettar in an attempt to make peace with him. Jagadish Shettar, upset at his loss in secret voting apparently refused to attend swearing in ceremony.

Sources close to Jagadish Shettar said his supporters plan to boycott the ceremony as they were not invited. Sources also suggest that Shettar has apparently refused the offer to serve as deputy chief minisiter of Karnataka.

Gowda will be sworn-in as the new Karnataka chief minister on Thursday at 4 pm. The Yeddyurappa backed BJP MLA will be administered oath by governor HR Bhardwaj.

DV Sadananda Gowda, was chosen to replace BS Yeddyurappa as the Karnataka chief minister on Wednesday. Gowda was elected soon after governor HR Bhardwaj gave the go-ahead for Yeddyurappa's prosecution. A secret ballot was called to choose the BJP legislature party leader after the central leaders' efforts to find a consensus candidate failed.

His challenger, rural development minister Jagadish Shettar - propped up by the rival camp led by party general secretary HN Ananth Kumar - fell short by 12 votes.

Some of the MLAs who pushed for Shettar's candidature met at his residence for breakfast today and discussed the "reasons" for his defeat.

"There are different reasons for his (Shettar's) defeat", camp follower and Home and Transport Minister R Ashoka told reporters but did not go into specifics.

He stated that he and the party's state unit chief KS Eshwarappa were among those (more than 50 MLAs) who had backed Shettar for the top post.

Meanwhile, Yeddyurappa said that from today, he is an "ordinary worker of the ruling BJP", and indicated that Gowda, whose candidature was suggested by himself, would have a free hand.

Asked if Gowda's victory is actually "Yeddyurappa's win", he said: "It's the party's win; unity's win".

Noting that he was being projected as "super chief minister" in some quarters, Yeddyurappa said, "He (Gowda) has the strength to work independently. I will not interfere in any issue".

Gowda on Thursday drove to Yeddyurappa's residence which was flocked by Ministerial aspirants as lobbying for cabinet berths intensified.

The mood was sombre in the rival camp led by BJP national general secretary HN Ananth Kumar and Eshwarappa.

Asked if this camp would attend the swearing-in ceremony, Ashoka evaded the question, saying it (the event) has not come to their notice and there was no "letter" (invitation). But Eshwarappa said all MLAs would participate.

With agency inputs