BS Yeddyurappa backs Narendra Modi as PM; KJP-BJP merger on cards
In what is likely to give a major boost to the BJP, Lingayat strongman and Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP) chief BS Yeddyurappa is all set to return to his former party.
Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: In what is likely to give a major boost to the BJP after the appointment of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as its Prime Ministerial candidate for 2014 polls, Karnataka strongman and Karnataka Janata Paksha (KJP) chief BS Yeddyurappa is all set to return to his former party.
Reports on Wednesday said that KJP central executive has authorized Yeddyurappa to take decision on merging the party with BJP.
Yeddyurappa`s party is set to pass a formal resolution welcoming Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi`s appointment as PM candidate.
Sources claimed that BSY, who is a known admirer of Modi, is happy with the latter`s appointment as the BJP`s PM candidate and has announced support for him.
KJP apex leadership is expected to meet on Thursday where a decision is likely to be taken. The KJP leaders are due to hold talks with the BJP a possible merger in the days to come.
However, the decision to rejoin BJP will take some more time as Yeddyurappa`s rivals in the BJP`s Karnataka unit are opposed to his return, say sources.
Yeddyurappa had last week hinted at returning to the BJP following it nominating Modi as its prime ministerial candidate.
"Will decide after a discussion with senior leaders of our party (Karnataka Janata Party) on Sep 18 and 19," he told reporters soon after the BJP announced Modi`s nomination in New Delhi.
Yeddyurappa, BJP`s first chief minister in Karnataka, said he welcomed Modi`s nomination and he would work for strengthening the NDA (National Democratic Alliance). Yeddyurappa, who was forced to quit the chief ministership in July 2011 over mining bribery charges, left BJP late last year to head KJP but his party fared poorly in the May 5 Karnataka assembly elections.
It won just six seats, including his, in the 225-member assembly.
Since then he has been shifting stands on whether he would return to BJP but has also been saying that he would decide after BJP decides on Modi`s role.
A section of Karnataka BJP unit led by former chief DV Sadananda Gowda has been lobbying for taking back Yeddyurappa as otherwise the party would not do well in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
The BJP had won 19 of the 28 Lok Sabha seats in the 2009 elections. Though the KJP won just six seats, the BJP acknowledged that its presence in the electoral fray heavily damaged the party which ended losing power. The BJP won only 40 seats as against 110 it won in 2008 to form its first government in the state with the help of six independents.
With IANS inputs