Jolt in Karnataka CM’s home district as former MLA U.B. Banakar quits BJP

He has also tendered his resignation from the posts of chairman of the Karnataka Warehousing Corporation and director of the Veerashaiva Lingayat Development Corporation

November 09, 2022 09:01 pm | Updated November 10, 2022 01:30 pm IST - HUBBALLI

U.B. Banakar

U.B. Banakar | Photo Credit: SANJAY RITTI

In a significant political development in Chief Minister’s home district Haveri, the former MLA for Hirekerur U.B. Banakar has tendered his resignation from the posts of chairman of the Karnataka Warehousing Corporation and director of the Veerashaiva Lingayat Development Corporation and also from the primary membership of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Mr. Banakar, son of the former Speaker of the Karnataka Assembly B.G. Banakar, has represented Hirekerur twice, first in 1994 as the BJP candidate and second time in 2013 as the Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP) candidate, defeating B.C. Patil (incumbent Agriculture Minister). Mr. Banakar, who has been in public life for around 38 years, is reportedly upset with the BJP leadership in the State, more so with Mr. Patil for the treatment meted out to his followers in the constituency.  A loyalist of the former Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, Mr. Banakar had followed him when he founded the KJP.

It may be recalled that during the 2019 bypolls, when Mr. Patil crossed over to the BJP, Mr. Banakar strongly opposed his candidature and was pacified at the last minute. The tussle between the followers of Mr. Banakar and Mr. Patil had been simmering ever since.

In an appeal to his acquaintances and friends, which was released to the media on Wednesday, Mr. Banakar said that it was time he took a crucial decision related to his public life. He thanked the public for respecting the decision he had taken earlier on several occasions.

Mr. Banakar has said that based on the grievances, pain expressed before him and suggestions and guidance given, he had decided to resign from the primary membership of the BJP and also from his posts in the two corporations.

Speculations are rife that Mr. Banakar may switch over to the Congress to contest the next Assembly election as he is unlikely to get the BJP ticket. He may choose to contest as an Independent also unless the BJP leadership succeeds to pacify him.

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