Uncertainty dogs power transfer scenario in Karnataka

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New Delhi, Oct 1 (UNI) Uncertainty continued to dog the issue of transfer of power from Janata Dal (Secular) to BJP in Karnataka with the JD (S) insisting that it can happen only after it gets the clearance of its Political Affairs Committee (PAC), its highest decision-making body.

Even if it gets the nod from the PAC, the transfer will be delayed by at least two days after the accepted deadline fixed by the two parties- October 3-for handing over the Chief Ministership to the BJP.

The BJP announced that its legislators and MPs from the state will meet at Bangalore tomorrow to take stock of the situation, while J D (S) Secretary General K Danish Ali said the party convened its PAC on October 5 in Delhi take a 'final decision'.

The party is to review the 20-month coalition experience with the BJP and take a final view on the power transfer.

However, observers of the party are 'pessimistic' about the PAC agreeing to the handing over of Chief Ministership to the BJP. The PAC had suspended all the MLAs including Chief Minister HD Kumarswamy for joining hands with the BJP but later relented saying that such a course was needed to save the party from disintegration.

The two parties had agreed to share the Chief Ministership for 20 months each and the J D (S) will be completing its term on Wednesday, October 3. BJP Vice-President Yashwant Sinha had meetings with J D (S) supremo and former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda last night and the two have agreed to meet again if necessary.

BJP spokesman Rajiv Pratap Rudy said senior leader M Venkaiah Naidu, also a Rajya Sabha MP from Karnataka will be joining Mr Sinha to oversee the BJP Legislature Party meeting where MPs of the state are also taking part.

In a significant move, BJP President Rajnath Singh today insisted that there was 'perfect unity' in the Karnataka BJP on the issue of transfer of power to the BJP as well as its chief ministerial candidate B S Yediyurappa. He maintained that there was no proposal before the party to give an 'extended term' to the J D (S).

Mr Rudy, doling out results and statistics of the just-concluded Local Body elections in the state, contended that the performance of the BJP was 'really good' where the party had increased its strength to 1170 wards from a mere 391 seats five years ago. BJP's coalition partner, the J D (S) had increased its tally to 1399 wards.

The Congress share on the other hand, had shrunk to 1581 from 2,232 wards, he said.

The BJP, he said had captured three of the seven city corporations -- Mangalore, Davanagere and Bellary and the BJP and JD (S) together had comfortable majority in Hubli-Dharwad Corporation. The elections to Bangalore City Corporation are yet to take place.

No political group in Mysore City Corporation had majority. In Belgaum Corporation, the Karnataka-based political parties had not contested on party symbols.

UNI

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