Karnataka BJP to hold `chinthan manthan`

The ruling BJP in Karnataka is holding a two-day brainstorming session to give lessons on morality and discipline to its legislators from Friday.

Updated: Feb 23, 2012, 22:30 PM IST

Bangalore: Hit by a barrage of allegations of corruption and intense power struggle among its leaders, the ruling BJP in Karnataka is holding a two-day brainstorming session to give lessons on morality and discipline to its legislators from Friday.
The `Chintan Manthan` will engage in serious talk with MLAs, MLCs and MPs at a private resort here to refurbish the
party`s image which took a severe beating recently after the
porn row that took place inside the Assembly.

Concerned over the plummeting popularity graph of the
party`s first ever government in the south with at least half
a dozen ministers and as many legislators facing allegations
of misuse of authority, acts of favouritism and nepotism, the
BJP high command is going all out to set its house in order.

BJP president Nitin Gadkari will address the meeting
tomorrow. The meeting comes at a time when the state unit is
divided between former chief minister BS Yeddyurappa and his
successor DV Sadananda Gowda.

Party sources say Gadkari, who is busy in the elections
being held in five states in North, would be returning to
Delhi tomorrow.

On the eve of the session, Yeddyurappa hosted a lunch for
legislators in a show of strength and to send a signal to his
party high command that he should either be reinstated as
chief minister or given some "position".

The faction loyal to Yeddyurappa, is said to be gunning
for the ouster of Gowda, whom it propped up to the post six
months ago, denying the chief ministership to rival faction
leader Jagadish Shettar.

The former chief minister, who is reported to be unhappy
with Sadananda Gowda over his continuance in the post, roped
in Shettar and Home Minister R Ashoka to put up a united
challenge.

Seeking to play-down the meet, state BJP President K S
Eshwarappa said, "We discussed the current political
situation, on the coming Udupi-Chikamagalur Lok Sabha
byelection and on strengthening the party organisation."

The issue of giving "position" to Yeddyurappa did not
come up for discussion, he added.

Sources in the BJP say the party central leadership is
unlikely to accept the demands of Yeddyurappa in the wake of
pending corruption cases in courts.

The BJP high command, which had forced Yeddyurappa to
quit in August last after his indictment in the Lokayukta
report on illegal mining, is in no mood to go in for another
round of change in leadership, fearing that such an exercise
might hurt its image further.

The BJP has held at least two such sessions in the last
three-and-half years to discipline its legislators, but the
exercise seems to have had no effect.

The power struggle is only increasing as also the legal
troubles for partymen over corruption charges.

PTI