The BJP Parliamentary Board will meet here on Thursday to decide the fate of Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa amidst signs that his continuance in office could be untenable in wake of the Lokayukta indictment in the mining scam.
The top brass of the BJP will meet this morning at the residence of BJP President Nitin Gadkari, who met Mr. Yeddyurappa late Wednesday night.
Mr. Yeddyurappa, who continued to be defiant and ruled out his resignation, left for Bangalore early this morning. He has a convened of meeting of party MLAs this morning in the Karnataka capital.
Sources said usually a meeting of the Parliamentary Board, the party’s highest decision making body, is called only when some big decision has to be taken, and this is also a pointer that Mr. Yeddyurappa’s time is up.
Upon his arrival here last evening with his Ministers and close confidants, Mr. Yeddyurappa appeared defiant and said he has not been asked to resign.
In the meeting with the party president and senior central party leaders Rajnath Singh, M. Venkaiah Naidu and Dharmendra Pradhan, the political fallout of the Lokayukta report was discussed with Mr. Yeddyurappa.
The Chief Minister tried to convince the central leadership that the charges made in the report were not new and a court case was already pending in the matter.
However, the central leadership conveyed to him that his continuance would weaken BJP’s fight against corruption, especially when the Monsoon Session of Parliament begins next week.
Ahead of the start of the meeting, senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu told reporters, “We have heard the Karnataka Chief Minister, we have heard the Advocate-General’s views and seen the report and we will take a decision now”.
Former Karnataka BJP president and Udipi MP D.V. Sadananda Gowda told reporters that no final decision has yet been taken on Mr. Yeddyurappa.
“The party’s Parliamentary Board will take a decision on the issue,” he said.
Asked as to what transpired at Wednesday’s meeting at Mr. Gadkari’s residence, Mr. Gowda said Mr. Yeddyurappa explained his views on the situation arising out of the Lokatyukta report.
He said other senior party leaders also submitted their reports on the current political situation in the State.
On Mr. Yeddyurappa convening a meeting of his party supporters, Mr. Gowda said, “It is Yeddyurappa who built the party in Karnataka and has taken the party leadership there and given good governance. I don’t think he will do anything that will damage the party”.
“We will abide by the decision of the party board,” he said.
Asked if he was in the race for the post of Chief Minister, he said, “At this stage, I don’t think there is any change of leadership”