Praja Pragati Ranga (PPR), a new political front in the State, is considering a pre-poll alliance with the Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP), which will be launched “officially” by the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa on December 9 at Haveri.
The PPR is a coalition of 14 Dalit, Backward Class and religious minority organisations. Its constituents are the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha, the Samata Sainik Dal, the Republican Party of India, the SDPI, the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Lok Janshakti Party, the Welfare Party of India, the Sarvodaya Karnataka Paksha, the Karnataka Dalit Sangharsh Samiti (Bhimavada), the Alemari Budakattu Mahasabha, the All-India Christian Council, the Dalit-Christian Okkoota, the Dalit Sena and the Dalita Sene.
Though KJP State president V. Dhananjaya Kumar ruled out the possibility of having a pre-poll alliance with anyone, Mr. Yeddyurappa is said to be making overtures to garner the support of various political fronts and small political parties.
Speaking to The Hindu, Kodihalli Chandrashekar, PPR chairman, admitted that he and the leaders of some of the constituents of the front had met Mr. Yeddyurappa recently and discussed about seat-sharing in the coming election to the Legislative Assembly. “However, the executive committee meeting of the front, which will be held shortly, will take a final decision on pre-poll alliance,” he said. When asked whether the PPR is prepared to have an alliance with the KJP, Mr. Kodihalli said that as long as the KJP remains secular, the PPR had no problem in joining hands and sharing seats with it.
The goal of the PPR was to defeat the Congress, the Janata Dal (Secular) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). “We are not averse to join hands with a regional party with secular credential,” he said.
However, another senior leader of the KRRS faction, led by Mr. Kodihalli, said there was sufficient reason for the PPR to have a soft corner for Mr. Yeddyurappa. “The former Chief Minister had announced many programmes to help farmers and uplift backward communities during his tenure,” he said.
Mr. Vatal Nagaraj, president of the Kannada Chaluvali Vatal Paksha, is also ready to support the KJP “if asked”.
The BSP, however, is still contemplating on the matter. State BSP president Marasandra Muniyappa said party chief Mayawati would take a final decision.