Former Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa will be touring the state a month after he has been replaced as the Karnataka CM, making the ruling BJP uneasy.
There are concerns in the party over a “parallel state leadership” being created by the former CM at a time when CM Basavaraj Bommai is trying to consolidate his position, media reports said.
BJP general secretary in charge of Karnataka, Arun Singh, is due in Bengaluru and is likely to speak to various camps. He may meet Yediyurappa and try to persuade him to drop the programme.
“I will be in Karnataka for three days. Various issues, including addressing some organisational issues, are on the agenda,” Singh said.
“Yediyurappa is the most experienced leader. If he wants to tour the state, let him do. It will only benefit the party,” Singh responded to queries about Yediyurappa’s plan to tour the state.
Yediyurappa resigned as CM last month after the BJP government in the state was halfway through its term in the state. However, the former CM, soon after his return from the Maldives last week, gave clear signs of returning to politics.
New CM Bommai had issued an order that Yediyurappa, who had played a significant role in his elevation as the Karnataka CM, will be given cabinet rank status. The order stated that the powerful Lingayat leader would enjoy all the facilities at par with cabinet rank ministers until Bommai remains at the helm, said media reports.
This was the first time a former CM has been given this kind of a status without holding a statutory post. However, Yediyurappa, who political observers have labelled as a “wounded tiger”, publicly declined the offer.
Yediyurappa’s recently met Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister KS Eshwarappa in Shivamogga. Eshwarappa was the first minister to revolt against Yediyurappa.
Media reports quoting party sources said as per a plan being prepared, Yediyurappa’s son and party’s vice president BY Vijayendra will have a major role in the state tour.
A leader from the Yediyurappa’s camp said that Vijayendra is looking to establish himself before the next elections. He said Vijayendra’s efforts to get a ministerial berth have been unsuccessful so far and the recent show is aimed at showing the support base of father and the son.