Bengaluru: Dissonance came to the fore with several BJP legislators making no secret of their discontent after failing to secure ministerial berth in the B S Yediyurappa Cabinet on Tuesday.
More than three weeks after he was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Karnataka and running a “one-man” Cabinet since then, Yediyurappa inducted 17 Ministers.
While many legislators have openly expressed their displeasure, at many places their supporters too have held protest against “injustice” caused to their leaders.
Chitradurga MLA G H Thippa Reddy expressed “surprise” and “pain” over his non-inclusion, and said he did not attend the swearing-in ceremony as he was unhappy.
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Several MLAs whose name did not figure in the list of ministers have discussed over phone denial of berth for them and will meet soon, he said. Thippa Reddy’s supporters held a protest at Chitradurga against their leader not being made minister.
Sullia BJP MLA Angara S said people from his district and constituency had expectations that he will be made minister. Pointing out that he has worked for the organisation believing in its principles and has inculcated them in his life, he said, “but I cannot do anything if there is no value to loyalty to those principles….”
He, however, said he was loyal to BJP, and identifying his loyalty and rewarding him for it was left to the party.
Madikeri MLA M P Appachu Ranjan expressed unhappiness over no representation to Kodagu district that “has been with the BJP for long.”
“These days loyalty to an individual is considered over the party loyalty.. Mysuru, Kodagu, Dakshina Kannda which is strong base of the BJP has not been given any representation, and it has pained us,” he added.
Several others, including Hosadurga MLA Goolihatti Shekar, Kundapur MLA Halady Srinivas Shetty and Umesh Katti- eight-time BJP MLA from Hukkeri, too are unhappy about their non-induction into the cabinet.
Katti said he should have become minister being a senior, but there is still a chance and he may become minister in the future. In response to a question, Katti said he was not aware how Laxman Savadi, who is not a legislator, had been made a minister.
“I’m yet to meet CM….I will discuss and know,” he said.
Meanwhile, a few MLAs who were left out of the ministry including M P Renukacharya of Honnali, Chennagiri MLA Madal Virupakshappa met at the residence of Arabhavi MLA Balachandra Jarkiholi, whose name was doing the rounds till the last minute, and held discussions.
Balachandra Jarkiholi later met Yediyurappa at his residence and was closeted with him. Speaking to the media, he said he was not dissatisfied and he along with other MLAs will support the Chief Minister in the functioning of the government. “The big challenge in front of us is relief in flood affected regions.”
Since 2005 one or the other Jarkiholi brothers have been in the government, he said, adding that the trend would continue and “one of us may become minister in the future with the blessings of the people.”
While Balachandra Jarkiholi is in the BJP, his brother Satish Jarkiholi is in the Congress. Another brother Ramesh Jarkiholi, who was in Congress had rebelled against the party and played a key role in the collapse of the Congress-JD(S) government.
He is likely to join the BJP and contest from Gokak, where bypolls is necessitated due to his disqualification, BJP sources said. Honnali MLA M P Renukacharya too said he was with the party and the government and his discussion with Balachandra Jarkiholi was on strengthening the party and government.
Karnataka can have a maximum of 34 ministers, including the Chief Minister. With this “limited” expansion, 16 cabinet berths are vacant, leaving space for some of the disqualified former Congress and JD(S) MLAs who helped bring down the coalition government headed by Kumaraswamy to get onboard.