Tactical move to quell dissidence?

The selection of Eeranna Kadadi as BJP candidate for RS polls has taken many by surprise

The BJP high command has picked Eeranna Kadadi, a surprise choice, to replace veteran leader Prabhakar Kore as its nominee for the Rajya Sabha polls.

This is largely seen as the party’s tactical move to quell dissidence in the party that had seemingly begun with former Minister Umesh Katti hosting lunch for north Karnataka MLAs to urge the party to nominate his younger brother Ramesh Katti to the Rajya Sabha.

The Katti brothers maintained that Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa had promised them a Rajya Sabha membership when their application for the Lok Sabha seat from Chikkodi was rejected. Mr. Ramesh Katti released a video message to his followers congratulating Mr. Kadadi and thanking the party leadership for choosing an ordinary worker to the Upper House. Mr. Ramesh Katti said he would cooperate with Mr. Kadadi and work with him for strengthening the party.

Mr. Kore has served three terms in the Rajya Sabha and one term in the Karnataka Legislative Council. He has lost an election to the Lok Sabha and the State Assembly in the past. He has not responded to him being dropped from the list of candidates.

Mr. Kadadi is a general secretary of the State BJP unit and is a Vibhag Prabhari, in charge of four districts of Mumbai Karnataka.

RSS leaders are said to have influenced the nomination of Mr. Kadadi. “He enjoys good rapport with State- and national-level RSS leaders. He is soft spoken and non-controversial. He remains in touch with all sections of the party and is therefore seen as a go-between during disputes and carrier of confidential messages,’’ said another leader.

Mr. Kadadi is a Panchamshali Lingayat from Kalloli village in Gokak taluk and his choice is also being seen as an attempt by the BJP to promote Lingayat leadership in Gokak taluk that has been dominated by the Jarkiholi clan for over three decades.

“Mr. Kadadi has served the party for long, without wanting to be a Minister or to seek a powerful position in the government. He was an aspirant to the Legislative Council this time, but the party rewarded him with a Rajya Sabha ticket, in recognition of his loyalty and hard work,’’ a senior leader said.

Mr. Kadadi, who joined the BJP as a youth leader in 1989, has served at several levels, starting from the secretary of the Gokak taluk unit to being an office-bearer of the party’s national farmers morcha. He has served as the president of the BJP rural unit two times.

Mr. Kadadi heads three cooperative societies in his native village. He is fairly active in Sahakara Bharati, the cooperative wing of the Sangh Parivar. He was the organising secretary of the national convention of Sahakara Bharati held in Belagavi in 2018.

He has served as the president of the Belagavi zilla panchayat. He has lobbied with the State government for various benefits to former presidents of zilla panchayats, as the State unit president of the Karnataka zilla panchayat presidents and vice-presidents association. He has studied till SSLC. His bio-data describes him as a farmer and trader.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 10:11:47 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/tactical-move-to-quell-dissidence/article31779769.ece

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