Bangalore: After months of keeping everyone guessing, former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa has finally made his exit from the BJP. It was an emotional and dramatic farewell for the man who had propelled the party to power for the first time. With his eyes firmly on the next Assembly election five months away, Yeddyurappa is already building up public sentiment for his new party, the Karnataka Janata Party.
"Now I am free to implement programmes towards a casteless society. All the political minorities especially the backward SC/ST people are supporting me," Yeddyurappa said confidently.
Caste will certainly be the main sway in Yeddyurappa's plan. His party largely will depend on the majority Lingayat population. Karnataka will now see a huge division of votes in terms of the fact that there are three regional parties- the JDS of Deve Gowda, the KJP of Yeddyurappa and the BSR of the Reddys in Bellary.
The congress says Yeddyurappa's exit will prove to its advantage. BL Shankar, Congress spokesperson, said, "Yeddyurappa is the only mass-based leader in the BJP and he and Rumulu launching new party... it'll reduce the BJP's vote share by at least 50 per cent."
The worry for BJP and Congress though is that if there is no clear winner in the Assembly elections, a new party like Yeddyurappa's could become a powerful kingmaker.