BJP moves to check dissidence in Karnataka

June 3rd, 2009 - 9:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi/Bangalore, June 3 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), whose first government in Karnataka is rocked by dissidence led by state cabinet ministers, Wednesday decided to act tough against disgruntled party veterans, state unit chief D.V. Sadananda Gowda said.
The party will call for explanation from senior party leader and state Energy Minister K.S. Eshwarappa on his reported comments that money and liquor were used by his party to lure voters in the recent parliamentary polls in the state.

“His comments are an insult to BJP workers,” Gowda told reporters in New Delhi.

“I will issue a show cause notice to Eshwarappa and further action will be taken after his reply,” Gowda said.

BJP won 19 of the 28 Lok Sabha seats in the state in the recent polls while the Congress took six and Janata Dal-Secular three.

Eshwarappa is among the several BJP leaders who were against fielding Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa’s son B.Y. Raghavendra in the polls.

Raghavendra, 36, won from Shimoga, home district of both Yeddyurappa and Eshwarappa, defeating former chief minister and Congress candidate S. Bangarappa by over 50,000 votes.

Eshwarappa, who represents the Shimoga assembly segment, had Monday accused Yeddyurappa of indulging in dynastic culture by fielding his son for the Shimoga Lok Sabha constituency.

Gowda and Yeddyurappa have been in New Delhi for the last two days meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and other central ministers. They met party president Rajnath Singh and briefed him about the dissidence in the party’s Karnataka unit.

The first BJP government in the state and in south India completed one year in office on May 30.

Eshwarappa and the influential Bellary mining barons and ministers G. Karunakara Reddy and his brother G. Janardhana Reddy and their associate B. Sreeramulu, also a minsiter, stayed away from a rally organised in Bangalore May 31 to mark the government’s first anniversary.

While Gowda, a Lok Sabha member, talked tough against Eshwarappa, the chief minister refused to comment on his energy minister’s attack on him.

“I have come here to discuss matters related to the development of the state. Sadananda Gowda will deal with the party matters,” Yeddyurappa told reporters.

Eshwarappa, who was also in New Delhi, told reporters that his statements have been misinterpreted. He claimed he had only said that the state BJP should probe charges that money and liquor were used in the elections and never said that the party had used these inducements to get votes.

In Bangalore, the Congress submitted a memorandum to Governor Rameshwar Thakur urging him to ask the election commission to probe Eshwarappa’s charges.

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