New Delhi: Former Karnataka chief minister and KJP chief BS Yeddyurappa knows that his new party can't make much of a difference in the coming Lok Sabha polls. With its 10 per cent vote share, he may not be able win even a single seat. At best he can once again split the BJP votes, helping the ruling Congress to win more seats.
Initially Yeddyurappa was not interested in returning to the BJP, which he left in November 2012. He secretly visited the national capital twice in the past 50 days to clinch a seat sharing deal with the Congress. He even met a top leader of the Congress to explore the possibility of such a tie up.
But, the Congress insisted on an informal seat 'adjustment'. Realising that such an arrangement will benefit the Congress and not his party, Yeddyurappa started negotiations with the BJP.
A Bangalore-based godman with close RSS links also mediated between him and the BJP. Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's elevation as BJP's PM candidate also forced Yeddyurappa to take a quick decision on his return.
In Modi's elevation, Yeddyurappa senses an opportunity to hit back at his nemesis LK Advani, whom he holds responsible for his ouster from the post of the chief minister in July 2011. The sidelining of Advani has come as good news for him.
In Thursday's meeting, he is extending KJP's support to the NDA and Modi. He will most likely merge his party with the BJP, once they agree to his conditions. He is demanding a bigger say in the party affairs and ticket distribution. He is also demanding a plum portfolio at the Centre, if the BJP comes to power under Modi.
Some of his close associates are not favouring a merger. They want Yeddyurappa to retain his party as an ally of the NDA. They think that it gives him a greater flexibility in the event of a hung Parliament. But, the RSS has made it clear that all his demands will be met, only if he agrees to merge KJP with BJP. Left with no other option, Yeddyurappa is moving in that direction.