For God's sake; BJP needs to flex its muscles to rein in BSY

Written by: Anita Nair
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BS Yeddyurappa
Bangalore, Mar 19: Following the UPA's turmoil in the Centre over the Railway Budget crisis and Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi's resignation, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley had called it the "theatre of the absurd". But it looks like a similar scenario is being repeated at the BJP-ruled Karnataka, thanks to power-broker and former Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa. Can this be called the "theatre of the absurd" - Part 2 (Karnataka style)?

With resort politics back with a bang in Bangalore, 67 BJP MLA's are holed up in a resort in the outskirts of Bangalore to plan their next move. The Yeddy loyalists are insisting that their leader, BS Yeddyurappa be reinstated as the CM in place of present CM Sadananda Gowda. This old tactic by Yeddyurappa has re-surfaced once again, only the time and place have changed.

BS Yeddyurappa spoke to reporters amidst the crisis in Bangalore, "When I had to resign as chief minister in July last, there were 70 MLAs with me. Today, eight months later and in changed circumstances, I have the same number. Besides, Shettar is with me. Somehow, I seem to have an attachment with the number 70. It is for the central leadership to take stock of the numbers and get to act."

Among the ministers who are ensconced at the Golden Palms resort in Tumkur Road are Bommai, CM Udasi, Jagadish Shettar, Shobha Karandlaje, MP Renukacharya and Revu Naik Belamagi. In the meanwhile, around 10 MP's loyal to Yeddyurappa have written a letter to Gadkari demanding reinstating BSY to his past honour. A meeting to this effect was held in BSY's son BY Raghavendra's residence in New Delhi. The MPs demanded Gadkari to convene a Legislature party meeting to resolve the crisis.

But with the BJP firm on its stand and downplaying the turn of events, party chief Nitin Gadkari is expected to talk to Yeddyurappa to soften his stand in the face of crisis. Arun Jaitley also commented, "BJP leadership in touch with Yeddyurappa, crisis in Karnataka not serious and will be resolved."

With the Karnataka government is a cess pool of dirty politics, this is the one brilliant opportunity the BJP has to redeem its position and take a fresh stand on the episode. The fact that Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is maintaining a stoic silence in the wake of such searing crisis is not helping the party either. The RSS had earlier declared to the BJP High Command over the crisis that "there will be no change in the leadership of the Karnataka BJP legislature party". It also added that "nonsense and indiscipline will not be tolerated and encouraged".

But as ordinary citizens who have had enough of the political uncertainty playing out in the state and the insane sums of money spent on resort politics by our elected representatives, it is high time we said, "Enough is enough". But the occasion has also come for the BJP to show some teeth and put its foot down as a last-ditch face-saving exercise ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

Resort politics is making a comeback in Karnataka even in the absence of mining baron Janardhana Reddy who pioneered resort politics for the first time and on many other occasions later. Well, the question now arises on who will foot the bill in the Hotel Golden Palm Hotel and Spa for the BJP acrobatics remains a mystery.

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