Yeddyurappa summoned to Delhi by BJP bosses, Karnataka crisis lingers
Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa was today summoned to New Delhi by BJP leadership after the revolt against him by party dissidents demanding his removal showed no signs of dying down.india Updated: Nov 03, 2009 22:18 IST
Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa was on Tuesday summoned to New Delhi by BJP leadership after the revolt against him by party dissidents demanding his removal showed no signs of dying down.
Yeddyurappa said he was leaving for the national Capital on Wednesday evening, as the dissidents led by the Reddy brothers --his ministerial colleagues--brushed aside BJP President Rajnath Singh's assertion that he will continue as Chief Minister prolonging the crisis.
"I will go to New Delhi tomorrow evening. I just now spoke to (senior party leader) Venkaiah Naidu. He told me about so many developments in Delhi. I will go and discuss it with national leaders", he told reporters in Bangalore.
Asked if he was ready for a "compromise formula", he merely said he would discuss with the party's central leadership and "follow their advice".
Yeddyurappa however replied in the affirmative when asked if he was willing to meet the rebels more than half the way.
Continuing their campaign for Yeddyurappa's removal, the dissidents also pressed for some other demands.
"In the interest of BJP and the workers in Karnataka, we need a very good leadership in the state. Whatever my stand is, I am not changing," Tourism Minister Janardhana Reddy, one of the Reddy brothers spearheading dissidence, told reporters in Delhi after meeting senior leader Sushma Swaraj.
In Bangalore, his brother and Revenue Minister Karunakara Reddy, described as "creation" of the media that Yeddyurappa would continue.
Janardhana Reddy, who met Swaraj again in the evening, said he would not return to Bangalore till the demand for removal of Yeddyurappa was met. He said the dissidents would not go back on their demand.
The BJP high command appears to be not in any mood to give in to the demand of the Bellary brothers, heading the dissident group, on the Chief Minister's removal but is not averse to considering their other demands, reliable party sources said.
Their demands include whittling down of the powers of Rural Development Minister Shoba Karandlaje, who is in the eye of rebels' storm, transfer of some key officials and review of cess on lorries carrying iron ore, said to be hurting the interests of the Reddy brothers, who are mining magnates.
Rajnath Singh, who had yesterday remarked "definitely, definitely" to a question on whether the Chief Minister would stay, stuck to his position.
"My stand is the same. I have said what I had to say yesterday," he told reporters today.
Yeddyurappa sounded conciliatory today when he recalled the contribution of the Reddy brothers in the formation of the BJP government.
"Today in all humility, I want to tell you something. It's true that in some bad moment, some political confusion had taken place. When we were forming the government, we needed the cooperation of Reddy brothers and they gave the cooperation," Yeddyurappa said in Bellary, the home of the Reddy brothers.
Party sources said in Delhi the leadership was one in not conceding to the demand for removal of the chief minister.
But it had not closed its mind on the other demands of the dissidents like changes in the government like induction of Speaker Jagdish Shettar into the government with a key portfolio like Home being given to him.
Shettar is the rallying point for the dissidents who want him to replace Yeddyurappa, who like him, belongs to the Lingayat community.