Vijay Sankeshwar resigned from the Legislative Council on Tuesday, even as Haveri legislator Nehru Olekar has threatened to resign from the Assembly if the Bharatiya Janata Party serves him with a show-cause notice.
Both are staunch supporters of the former Chief Minister and Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP) president B.S. Yeddyurappa.
Even as the BJP warned that it would take disciplinary action against MLAs who attended the KJP programme in Haveri, Mr. Olekar said: “I will resign from the Assembly membership if notice seeking explanation is served. All MLAs who were on the dais with Mr. Yeddyurappa will resign if a notice is served,” Mr. Olekar told reporters here on Tuesday.
Speaking to presspersons separately, Mr. Sankeshwar said he had resigned because of the “suffocating” atmosphere in the party, which was being “remote-controlled” by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
Speaking to The Hindu , BJP general secretary Raghunath Rao Malkapure said Mr. Sankeshwar was aware that a show-cause notice would be served on him after the core committee meeting. “He might have resigned fearing action,” he said.
Addressing presspersons in Hubli, Mr. Sankeshwar said: “I have been associated with the RSS for 52 years and it is much more than a mother to me. And I am not against the RSS. But the manner in which it has functioned in the last eight to ten years, especially with regard to the lack of transparency on donations received by it and the manner in which it is dictating terms to the BJP, has disappointed me.”
“My point is clear. If the RSS wants to indulge in politics, let it do so directly. Why should it ride on the BJP?” he asked. Mr. Sankeshwar said although he had been against the Congress since childhood, he felt the high command in Congress was democratic to some extent since it allowed its members to express their displeasure.
Clarifying that he was not a politician, but a businessman who got an opportunity to serve the people through the BJP, Mr. Sankeshwar also questioned the rationale behind RSS’ efforts to get a second term for BJP national president Nitin Gadkari despite allegations of irregularities against him.