Applying brakes to efforts by a section of the party to bring back B.S. Yeddyurappa, the BJP on Saturday put the ball in the former Karnataka Chief Minister’s court, saying the proposal for homecoming should come from him.
“Since Yeddyurappa had left the party on his own, he should send us a proposal (of his return). Thereafter, the state BJP Core Committee will discuss it,” the BJP in-charge of Karnataka Thawar Chand Gehlot told reporters after the state BJP core committee meeting where the issue figured.
The decision has been left to the party’s central leadership, he said.
Mr. Gehlot said the meeting discussed 2014 Lok Sabha polls and Mr. Yeddyurappa’s return. “State BJP President Prahlad Joshi raised the issue saying he was approached by a section of party leaders demanding Yeddyurappa’s return.”
Asked if Mr. Yeddyurappa’s return would bring victory to BJP in Lok Sabha elections, Mr. Gehlot said “you and we all feel that if we were together, the situation could have been better.”
Replying to another query, Mr. Gehlot said it is true that one section is supporting Mr. Yeddyurappa’s return while another is opposing it. He added that the issue will be solved only after the KJP President moves a proposal in this regard.
Asked about Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s opinion on Mr. Yeddyurappa’s return, Mr. Gehlot said “there is no question of an individual (decision). Once the proposal is sent, BJP Parliamentary Board will deliberate and decide.”
The move to bring back Mr. Yeddyurappa gathered pace after former chief minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda and former ministers Aravind Limbavali, Umesh Katti and Basavaraj Katti among others presented their views to Joshi.
These leaders strongly believe Mr. Yeddyurappa’s return would boost BJP’s prospects in the next Lok Sabha polls.
Last week, they had met at party MP D.B. Chandre Gowda’s residence to discuss their plan to bring back the Lingayat leader, who has floated his KJP months after being forced to quit as chief minister over the illegal mining controversy.
Mr. Yeddyurappa, however, had ruled out his homecoming for now saying that nobody has approached him so far and he was keen on strengthening and maintaining a separate identity of Karnataka Janata Paksha.