Bangalore: Former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa is said to have conveyed to the high command that if not him, a candidate of his choice should be made the party’s state unit president. Party sources said the Lingayat strongman had suggested three names - Major Industries Minister Murugesh Nirani, PWD Minister C M Udasi and Energy Minister Shobha Karandlaje - for the post.
All the three are his staunch followers and they stood by him when he recently forced the party brass to appoint Jagadish Shettar as Chief Minister. “Nirani was recently called to Delhi by the party high command to discuss the issue,” a source said. Nirani, however, said he was not in the race and it would be good for the BJP to go to polls under Yeddyurappa’s leadership.
As incumbent party chief K S Eshwarappa’s three-year tenure ends in two months, the BJP is looking for a leader acceptable to different party factions and to major communities in the state. Many names, including those of Mangalore MP Nalin Kumar Katil and Dharwad MP Prahlad Joshi, are doing the rounds. Joshi enjoys a good rapport with many senior BJP leaders like H N Ananth Kumar and Jagadish Shettar, while Katil is said to have got the backing of party leaders from the coastal region and the Sangh Parivar.
Sources said the Lingayat strongman has suggested three names - Murugesh Nirani, C M Udasi and Shobha Karandlaje.
Meanwhile, Yeddyurappa is said to be considering the option of quitting the party if he or his ‘nominee’ is not appointed as the party president. Former CM D V Sadananda Gowda-led group is likely to oppose any such move. Thus the high command has a tough job of keeping different party factions happy while making an appointment for that all-important post.