In Karnataka, some Ministers choose Delhi visit over Cabinet meeting

B.S. Yediyurappa  

The decision of a few prominent Ministers to fly to Delhi, rather than attend the meeting of the State Cabinet convened by Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Friday, has sparked off another round of speculation ahead of the proposed ministerial expansion.

Though these Ministers are citing the organisational office inauguration of party national general secretary C.T. Ravi in New Delhi as the reason for the visit, the speculation is that they may be trying to use the opportunity to consult central leaders on Cabinet expansion.

After realising that the party high command is in no mood to bow to pressure from Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa to take up ministerial expansion immediately, these Ministers may be trying to safeguard their own political interests besides lobbying for their supporters, sources in the party said.

While Water Resources Minister Ramesh Jarkiholi is already in New Delhi, apparently to lobby for ministerial berths for all the legislators who came with him to the BJP from rival political parties to help form the party government in Karnataka, Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi and Revenue Minister R. Ashok and Muzrai Minister K. Srinivas Poojary too have gone to Delhi. There is also a likelihood of one or two more Ministers joining them on Friday.

Meanwhile, senior leader and Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister K.S. Eshwarappa too would not be attending the Cabinet meeting as he would be visiting Hyderabad owing to poll-related work.

Though all the Ministers who are skipping the Cabinet meeting have made it clear that they have taken Mr. Yediyurappa’s permission, the timing of their visit — that follows dissatisfaction over the manner in which appointments to various boards and corporations have been made — has raised eyebrows.

Ignored recommendations?

The Chief Minister, who made numerous appointments in the last three days, has reportedly not considered most of the recommendations made by the party organisation. A senior member of the party State unit said the party organisation had recommended the names of about 30 workers for various appointments, but most of them were ignored. He observed that mostly those who are loyal to Mr. Yediyurappa had got posts.

While the party State unit is already witnessing a divide between the party old-timers and those who came from outside, the recent political appointments have further divided the party, observed a senior leader.

Mr. Yediyurappa’s decision on appointments is being interpreted by some leaders in the BJP as an indication of his stern response to the lukewarm behaviour of the central leadership, particularly on ministerial expansion. It is being speculated if it is an indication that Mr. Yediyurappa would not bow down easily if the high command effects a change of guard without taking him into confidence.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2021 4:55:29 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/some-ministers-choose-delhi-visit-over-cabinet-meeting/article33189104.ece

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