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Sep 18, 2013 at 03:01pm IST

My party will join NDA and support Modi as PM: Yeddyurappa

Bangalore: Former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa has made it certain that he will support Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as the NDA Prime Ministerial candidate. He, however, said that his party won't merge with the BJP but will share seats with the NDA in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Modi shares an excellent personal rapport with Yeddyurappa.

Yeddyurappa is credited with singlehandedly building and bringing the BJP to power in Karnataka, the first southern state where the party had its government, in 2008. Yeddyurappa was forced to step down as the chief minister after he was indicted by the Karnataka Lokayukta in mining scams and illegal assets cases. He soon quit the BJP and formed the Karnataka Janatha Paksha but failed to make a major impact in the 2013 Assembly elections in the state.

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After his talks with the ruling Congress over a formal tie up in the coming Lok Sabha elections failed, there are reports that the KJP chief has decided to merge his party with the BJP. The RSS has been putting enormous pressure on Yeddyurappa to return to BJP to strengthen Narendra Modi's candidature for the post of the Prime Minister.

But a section in the KJP is opposed to a merger. They are even threatening to quit KJP, if Yeddyurappa goes ahead with the merger. On the other hand the BJP has promised Yeddyurappa the post of leader of opposition in the Assembly and a plum portfolio at the Centre, if it comes to power.

The 70-year-old Lingayat strongman has informed his close associates that it is not possible for him to keep the KJP intact. KJP leaders are meeting on Thursday where Yeddyurappa will announce his party's support to the NDA and Narendra Modi.