BJP infighting in Karnataka comes to fore as senior minister Somanna lands in New Delhi
Bengaluru/New Delhi: The infighting within Karnataka’s ruling BJP came out in the open as Housing Minister V. Somanna, who is reportedly miffed with former CM B.S. Yediyurappa and his son B.Y. Vijayendra for meddling, reached New Delhi on Wednesday to meet senior party leaders.
The minister, who is in charge of Chamarajanagar, remained absent from the ‘Vijay Sankalp Yatra’ in the district attended by BJP national President J.P. Nadda and also kept his distance from the party activities. His son Arun Somanna, without taking his name, attacked Vijayendra on a public platform.
Somanna is likely to meet Union Minister for Mine, Coal and Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi and other senior leaders. Sources said that he is going to seek clarity on his position and seek a stop to interference by Yediyurappa and his son Vijayendra.
A Lingayat leader brought to the BJP by Yediyurappa, Somanna did not back Yediyurappa when he left the BJP to form his Karnataka Janata Party (KJP) and since then both leaders are at loggerheads.
“Straight talk will land you in trouble. I am not here to plead before anyone. I know how to behave appropriately and I can’t giggle simply. I have practised direct politics. The truth is bitter under present circumstances.
“Yediyurappa is a big leader. I won’t talk about him. You ask him how the situation was 15 years ago. He should also notice who is contributing to the party,” Somanna told media persons.
Asked if he is in New Delhi to complain about Vijayendra, Somanna said that Vijayendra is just the son of Yediyurappa. “What is his age to compare him with me? There are many leaders of his age with me. Yediyurappa has not spoken to me. If he wants to talk, I will go to him. I don’t hate Yediyurappa,” he said.
Sources claim that Somanna is all set to join the Congress as the BJP is not giving concrete promises about his future. The Congress has, on the other hand, given him the offer of a prominent post for him and his son Arun Somanna if he quits the BJP. The Congress is thinking of gaining upper hand in at least 10 assembly constituencies in Bengaluru if it manages to lure him to its side.
Yediyurappa has stated that he would talk to him and ensure that Somanna remains in BJP. But, after Somanna’s statement, he has not made any attempt to talk to him, sources said.