Karnataka

Maharashtra impact: Central leaders likely to go easy on Yediyurappa

Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, accompanied by BJP MP Shobha Karandlaje, seeking votes for S.T. Somashekar in Yeshwantpur constituency on Saturday.

Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, accompanied by BJP MP Shobha Karandlaje, seeking votes for S.T. Somashekar in Yeshwantpur constituency on Saturday.  

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A lot, however, would depend on how many seats BJP wins in byelections

The political developments in Maharashtra and subsequent formation of the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi, comprising the Shiv Sena, the Nationalist Congress Party, and the Congress, are likely to give Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa a better handle to deal with BJP central leaders who have kept him on tenterhooks on many occasions so far.

A State Minister said the central leaders of the party would be doubly careful while dealing with regional satraps after learning a “bitter lesson” in Maharashtra, which led to the collapse of the Devendra Fadnavis-led government within three days.

More freedom

“The party high command will handle Mr. Yediyurappa carefully now, also in the light of his hold on the dominant Linagayat community,” said a leader. While Mr. Yediyurappa was controlled by central leaders for every small move so far, be it the ministry formation or pick of candidates, he may now get more freedom, he said. However, a lot would depend on how many seats the BJP would win in the byelections, and Mr. Yediyurappa’s standing in the party would be further enhanced if the party does well.

Karnataka, which is financially better off when compared with many other BJP-governed States, is also in a better position when it comes to electoral funding. “Mr. Yediyurappa will be more comfortable now and may gain an upper hand while meeting with the central leaders or Union Ministers,” another party functionary said.

With Karnataka now the second largest BJP-governed State after Uttar Pradesh, a Minister said the party’s failure to handle alliance partner the Shiv Sena in Maharashtra may put on the back burner the talk about leadership change in the State early next year.

Currently, the BJP commands majority in eight States — Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Arunachal Pradesh, and Tripura. In the north-eastern States and Goa, the BJP is either entirely dependent on its allies to retain power or plays a junior partner to a regional ally.

The decline

In fact, the BJP-governed geographical area has declined from 71% in 2017 to 40% in 2019. The BJP was at the peak in 2018 when it was in power in 21 States, either on its own or in an alliance with a regional party, before elections to three States in Hindi heartland.

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Printable version | Dec 10, 2019 2:06:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/maharashtra-impact-central-leaders-likely-to-go-easy-on-yediyurappa/article30126091.ece

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