or face expulsion, BJP tells Yeddyurappa
On a day
of high drama and swift developments, the Bharatiya Janata Party
(BJP) high command Friday told scam-hit Karnataka Chief Minister
B.S. Yeddyurappa to resign forthwith or face expulsion from the
scam-hit Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa reiterating
that he would resign Sunday, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) central
observers Arun Jaitley and Rajnath Singh Saturday began seeking
party legislators' views on a successor to form the second BJP
government in the state.
"Jaitley and Singh have already met about 60 party MLAs (member of
legislative assembly) since morning and hope to meet the remaining
lawmakers by night to pave way for the smooth election of the new
leader after Yeddyurappa resigns Sunday," a party source privy to
the parleys told IANS here.
Refuting conflicting reports in a section of the media,
Yeddyurappa reiterated in a statement that he would submit his
resignation letter to state Governor H.R. Bhardwaj Sunday
afternoon as the inauspicious Ashada month will end Saturday night
(as per the Hindu calendar) to enable the party legislators elect
a new leader in his place.
"As per the decision taken by the senior leaders of the party's
parliamentary board (Thursday), I will resign from the chief
minister's post Sunday afternoon," Yeddyurappa said in a statement
from his official residence.
After he failed to get any assurance till late Friday from the
party's high command that his conditions would be met, a dejected
Yeddyurappa met Jaitley and Singh earlier in the day and conveyed
that he would abide by the leadership's decision to quit and make
way for the successor.
The beleagured Yeddyurappa whose tenure so far has been marred by
a string of cotroversies had insisted that he should be allowed a
hand in picking his successor, have a say in the formation of the
new ministry, and be appointed as the party's state unit
president's post. He wanted these assurances before he formally
"The party's state unit office has summoned all its legislators to
Bangalore by phone, fax and SMS (short messaging service) for
meeting the two observers and conveying their opinion on the
choice of the new leader," a senior party member told IANS but
declined to be identified.
The observers plan to convene the BJP legislature party meeting
soon after Yeddyurappa submits resignation letter to the governor
at Raj Bhavan Sunday afternoon, for either proposing or electing a
new leader to form the second BJP government in the state.
In contrast to the defiant stand taken by Yeddyurappa's die-hard
supporters, including a dozen ministers and about 40 lawmakers
against the change of leadership till late Friday, some of them
like Infrastructure Development Minister G. Jananardhana Reddy,
Health Minister B. Sriramulu and Excise Minister M.P. Renukacharya
changed the tune Saturday and agreed to abide by the decision of
the party's high command.
"Though we are still with Yeddyurappa and want him to continue as
the chief minister, we will abide by whatever decision he would
take in line with the directive of the party's high command,"
Reddy and Renukacharya told reporters here.
In a related development, state Home Minister R. Ashoka said the
new chief minister would be decided on the basis of the opinion of
In the 225-member 13th state legislative assembly, the ruling BJP
has 121 members, including the speaker, the opposition Congress
72, the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) 24, six are Independents, one
nominated member. One seat is vacant.
The half-way mark for simple majority is 113 members to win a