Former Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa said he has decided to put off his decision to quit as MLA after discussions with national leaders and others, belying speculation that he would quit the Bharatiya Janata Party. He says he respects Central BJP leaders.
Earlier on Monday, he told reporters he would consult MPs, MLAs and his supporters and announce his decision by 4 p.m.
Yeddyurappa has been fuming at BJP central leadership for “ignoring” him, particularly after the Supreme Court order for a CBI probe into illegal mining during his tenure as chief minister.
Yeddyurappa, who visited Siddganga mut pontiff Shivakumara Swamiji of the Lingayat community to which he belongs, attacked BJP General Secretary H.N. Anantkumar, state unit chief K.S. Eshwarappa, Chief Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda and RSS leader Satish. He accused Anantkumar of “feeding malicious information” about him to BJP leader L K Advani.
In a damage-control bid, Eshwarappa on Monday ruled out accepting resignations of more than half a dozen MLAs and dropping ministers loyal to Yeddyurappa.
Meanwhile, MLAs and ministers loyal to Yeddyurappa met at a breakfast meeting at his Race Course residence where the consultation process has begun.Sources close to Yeddyurappa claim he has been toying with the idea of quitting BJP, a development that would threaten the survival of the four-year-old BJP government, the first ever in the South.
Eight ministers loyal to Yeddyurappa have already handed over their resignation letters to their leader.
In another development, the BJP central leadership has reportedly rejected Yeddyurappa’s demand for change in the leadership of Sadananda Gowda. Minister for Power Shobha Karandlaje, who was sent as Yeddyurappa’s emissary to hold talks with BJP leaders, is returning empty handed.
On Yeddyurappa praising Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her party for being supportive of leaders facing trouble “unlike” his own party, Eshwarappa said the BJP leadership had never left any of their leaders including L.K. Advani, Narendra Modi, Madan Lal Khurana and Uma Bharti in the lurch during the crises they faced.