Jaitley reaching Bangalore on trouble-shooting mission (Lead)

May 18th, 2012 - 12:12 am ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Bangalore/New Delhi, May 17 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party’s ’s senior leader Arun Jaitley is rushing to Bangalore Friday on a trouble-shooting mission to defuse the crisis in the state’s faction-ridden ruling party following a revolt by a beleaguered former chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and his loyalists.

“The party’s central leadership has deputed Jaitley and Dharmendra Pradhan (in-charge of party affairs in Karnataka), to Bangalore to hold talks with our state unit leaders and cadres,” state unit president K.S. Eshwarappa told reporters in Bangalore Thursday.

BJP sources in New Delhi earlier said Jaitley would be visiting Bangalore to take stock of the situation.

Though scam-hit Yeddyurappa held back his threat to leave the party or destabilise the eight-month-old D.V. Sadananada Gowda government, his decision Thursday to set up his own party office in Bangalore Friday and leave the official residence by this month-end has stoked fresh trouble for the leadership.

“We will discuss with Jaitley and Pradhan all issues, including Yeddyurappa’s demand for convening the legislature party meeting, cabinet expansion and party’s candidates for the upcoming legislative council by-elections (June 10) to ensure the party and the government focus on the state’s development hereafter,” Eshwarappa stressed.

A day after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raided houses of Yeddyurappa and his two sons and his son-in-law in Bangalore and Shimoga Wednesday as part of its probe into the graft charges levelled against them in the multi-crore mining scam, Yeddyurappa said he would vacate the official residence by June 1 to avoid embarrassing the party and the government, as he was only a lawmaker now and not holding any post in the party or the government.

“I am opening a separate office to make it convenient for the people and party members, including cadres, to meet me freely to seek my advice or help as I will continue to serve the people as before,” Yeddyurappa told reporters after a meeting with his loyalists and supporters.

Jaitley and Pradhan will also call on Yeddyurappa to ascertain his demands or grievances in an effort to resolve the differences in the party’s state unit.

In a related development earlier in the day, the CBI special court adjourned hearing on the anticipatory bail application of Yeddyurappa to May 25 after the central probe agency counsel petitioned the court that the case should be heard by a special judge and not by the vacation bench of the trial court.

Fearing imminent arrest, Yeddyurappa, his two sons B.Y. Vijayendra and B.S. Raghavendra and son-in-law R.N. Sohan Kumar moved the CBI court Wednesday for anticipatory bail after the Supreme Court May 11 directed the CBI to probe corruption charges against them in the alleged mining scam.

Yeddyurappa May 12 claimed securing resignations of nine state ministers loyal to him in a bid to force the party’s leadership to replace Gowda — originally his chosen successor — with another person of his choice.

Though Yeddyurappa Monday indicated he would resign from the party, he later claimed that he had put off the decision following calls from party chief Nitin Gadkari as well as Jaitley.

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