The Karnataka BJP witnessed an embarrassing situation as 14 MLAs allegedly voted for Pranab Mukherjee, the UPA candidate, during the polls. It exposed the feud and fragmentation that have plagued the party. Sources said the MLAs who cross-voted belonged to three separate factions, including the anti-Yeddyurappa and anti-Gowda camps.
According to sources, one of the groups was the Bellary Reddy faction which is loyal to Sriramulu, the former Health Minister who later floated his own party. These supporters, although did not leave the party, remained loyal to Sriramulu. The second group is said to be including those who were left out from the Cabinet of the new CM. These disgruntled MLAs are said to be close to the BSY loyalists. They decided to go against the party command to express their grievance.
The third group might include supporters of DV Sadananda Gowda, who was rmoved from the CM's post following an open revolt by BSY and his loyalists. The Gowda supporters might have voted against PA Sangma, who was backed by the BJP against Mukherjee, to reveal their annoyance over Gowda's ouster.
The BJP national leadership said it will send a team to Bangalore to probe the matter and CM Shettar is likely to convene a meeting. In Karnataka, Pranab got 117 votes while Sangma got 103 votes. The UPA candidate went on to win the presidential election and became the 13th President of India.