Yeddyurappa to expand Karnataka ministry tomorrow
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Last Updated: Tuesday, September 21, 2010, 15:33
Bangalore: Facing resentment among some members of his Cabinet who fear being axed and intense lobbying by aspirants, Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa is all set to expand his 32-month-old BJP ministry on Wednesday.

The swearing-in of new ministers has been scheduled at 9:30 am in the Raj Bhavan.

"I am expanding my ministry tomorrow. The list of those who will be inducted will be finalised by this evening," Yeddyurappa, who had held a consultation with the party central leadership in Delhi yesterday, told reporters here.

Yeddyurappa declined to answer a query on the ministers whom he planned to drop, but state BJP president KS Eswarappa said three from the 31-member ministry would be axed and six inducted.

However, Eswarappa refused to divulge the names of the members who would be dropped.

The reshuffle was preceded by high drama with a minister threatening to commit suicide if he was removed and threat of resignations by some MLAs aspiring for ministerial berths.

Currently, there are three vacancies in the Cabinet.

Sources close to Yeddyurappa said with discontent brewing among ministers who feared being dropped and also among ministerial hopefuls, he might just fill up the three slots without tinkering with the ministry.

Tourism Minister G Janardhana Reddy, who was the rallying point for dissidents last year, has opposed dropping of independents, including Sports Minister Goolihatti Shekar or Minister for Adult Education Shivana Gouda Naik, who quit JDS and joined BJP in 2008.

Shekar had yesterday threatened to commit suicide if dropped from the ministry, while Naik has said he would resign from his Assembly membership.

Soon after his return from a US trip, Excise Minister MP Renukacharya, who has been pressing for the induction of Belur Gopalakrishna, held consultations with some MLAs before meeting Yeddyurappa.

Supporters of former minister SN Krishnaiah Setty, who had quit last year in the wake of allegations relating to sale of Karnataka Housing Board land, organised a procession to press for his return to the ministry.

The reshuffle exercise has triggered resentment among several party MLAs with CT Ravi from Chikmagalur submitting his resignation from Assembly to Eshwarappa.

Appacchu Ranjan, MLA from Madikeri district, also resorted to a similar tactic, BJP sources said.


First Published: Tuesday, September 21, 2010, 15:33

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