The rift in the Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party may be over for now but the path to patch up was not easy. Clashes between B S Yeddyurappa and K S Eshwarappa landed the leaders at party president Amit Shah's residence forcing the senior leadership to reprimand both strongmen severely for the fiasco that played out in Karnataka BJP.
Sources from the BJP suggested that both leaders were asked to bury their differences and put the party before their ego. Party national organisation secretary Ramlal, national joint secretary Santhosh and state unit in-charge Muralidhar Rao were part of the meeting. It was in fact at the behest of Muralidhar Rao that the senior leadership finally intervened to solve the crisis in Karnataka BJP.
Letters that were written by party leaders seeking action against K S EShwarappa for indulging in anti-party activities, as well as the letter that was written by rebelling members expressing their disappointment over B S YEddyurappa's ways of functioning, were brought to Amit Shah's notice. For K S Eshwarappa who hoped to impress the party leadership with the following her had gathered for Sangolli Rayanna Brigade, Amit Shah's order to keep away from the brigade activities came as a major disappointment. The brigade will cease to exist as a separate entity but will be merged with the party's OBC morcha, said sources.
"The party also decided to make K S Eshwarappa the chief of the OBC morcha as if to comfort him for not allowing his participation in Brigade activities anymore," said a BJP source. Not reserving all disappointment only for K S Eshwarappa, the party chief is said to have pulled up B S Yeddyurappa for his unilateral decisions. It was expressed in clear terms that the party's core committee would take all party related decisions. It was conveyed to Eshwarappa in as many words that B S Yeddyurappa is the boss of BJP in Karnataka and for a very good reason. No more parallel meetings of the Sangolli Rayanna brigade will take place but conventions under the name of Rayanna will be held across the state and both leaders will not have to be present at the said conventions.
From a phase when Eshwarappa claimed that the Brigade wouldn't work towards making B S Yeddyurappa the chief minister and that it was not a political but a social organisation, Friday's meet put things to perspective for both leaders. There were no happy faces at the end of the meet. B S Yeddyurappa is now compelled to work with K S Eshwarappa who holds control over the OBC morcha and the latter has to let go of his ambitious Brigade if he wishes to play a role in the party. For the senior leadership that was busy with the five state elections, the rift in Karnakata and the need to solve it only came as added burden, a source said. They cannot ignore the rift here simply because the largest presence of the BJP in South is in Karnataka and they wouldn't want to make the mistake of gifting a victory to the Congress in the upcoming 2018 assembly polls like they did previously thanks to in-fighting, the source added.