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Basanagouda Patil hints at 'historical changes' in Karnataka after Sankranti


Bengaluru, Dec 24: Amid talks that the Karnataka cabinet expansion or reshuffle is likely next month,senior BJP MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, who had earlier claimed that B S Yediyurappa will not remain Chief Minister for long, on Friday hinted at ''historical changes'' in the state after Sankranti.

Basanagouda Patil

The former Union Minister indicated that ''Uttarayana'', the period after Sankranti, may prove good for the northern part of the state.

"...whether it will be cabinet expansion or reshuffle or something else...for all these things- there is possibility of historical changes after Makara Sankramana (Sankranti)," the Vijayapura MLA told reporters in that city.

Reiterating that he was not aspiring for any Ministerial post, he said the high command would take a good decision and do justice to Vijayapura district, "as injustice has happened for so long."

Yatnal had in October claimed that Yediyurappa will not remain CM for long and the high command has decided that his successor will be from the north Karnataka region. He had even accused the Chief Minister of taking all the development work to his home district of Shivamogga, while taking back funds allocated to MLAs of other constituencies.

Reacting to Yatnal''s comments, Union Minister Sadananda Gowda said the former was just an MLA and does not hold any official party position to speak on such matters.

"When the right people speak on issues at the right forum, it will be meaningful and will earn respect. Who is Basangouda Patil Yatnal?He is neither the national leader of our party nor its Karnataka unit president. He is not even in a position to speak on such matters.He is just an ordinary MLA," Gowda said.

The Union Minister said it was not right on the part of Yatnal to issue statements to the media daily and added that if he wished to raise issues, he could speak to the national president, the state president or the CM.

"Making such statements publicly will not do good for his political future," he said.

There have been speculations in some quarters in recent times that the BJP high command was mulling over a change in leadership, considering Yediyurappa''s age.

However, the state BJP had recently strongly refuted reports about replacing the 77-year-old Lingayat strongman.

Talks about cabinet reshuffle or expansion have resurfaced in BJP circles amid reports that senior party leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah is expected to visit the state on January 15 or 16.

Yediyurappa has been waiting for some time now to carry out the cabinet exercise, as he was asked by BJP national president J P Nadda at their November 18 meeting in New Delhi to wait for the clearance from the central leadership.

The cabinet expansion or reshuffle is expected to be a tightrope walk for the Chief Minister, considering that there are too many aspirants, from the party old guard to Congress- JD(S) rebels who are now BJP legislators. The cabinet currently has 27 members, and seven berths are still vacant.

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