Graft-hit Yeddyurappa drops plan to support Hazare

August 18th, 2011 - 7:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Bangalore, Aug 18 (IANS) Scam-hit former Karnataka chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa Thursday backed out of his plan to stage an indefinite ‘dharna’ (sit-in) to support social activist Anna Hazare’s anti-graft campaign reportedly after being pulled up by his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders.

Yeddyurappa, who quit July 31 after being indicted by Lokayukta (ombudsman) for graft in illegal mining, Wednesday announced that he would launch indefinite ‘dharna’ near Mahamta Gandhi statue in Bangalore city centre to support Hazare’s campaign against corruption.

The opposition Congress and Janata Dal-Secular mocked at the plan and dubbed it as a case of “wolf offering to protect sheep”.

A section of the ruling BJP in Karnataka also opposed Yeddyurappa’s plan, fearing the party would be butt of jokes as the former chief minister is facing several graft cases and has moved the high court seeking anticipatory bail apprehending arrest.

“We apprised our central leaders that Yeddyurappa staging ‘dharna’ against corruption is highly inappropriate and would expose the BJP to ridicule. He was told by our central leaders to desist from actions that would bring further bad name to the party,” a senior leader told IANS, requesting anonymity.

Following the party directive, Yeddyurappa stayed away from the protest staged by his loyalists in the badly-divided state unit of the party.

The supporters who sat on ‘dharna’ at the Gandhi statue added their bit to the party’s discomfiture with their explanation on Yeddyurappa’s absence.

“He stayed away because if he had come, there would have been a traffic jam,” Excise Minister M.P. Renukacharya, one of Yeddyurappa loyalists staging the protest, told reporters at the venue.

All others at the protest were also known Yeddyurappa followers. They included ministers Basavaraj Bommai, Murugesh Nirani, Umesh Katti, Lakshman Savadi and C.C. Patil.

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