After recently rejecting rumous about him stepping down , Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa is said to have told a delegation of pontiffs from various communities on Tuesday that he will have to abide by the decision of the BJP high command, giving some credence to speculation that a change of leadership is on the cards. However, these pontiffs have warned of a political fallout for the BJP in Karnataka if Yediyurappa is dislodged as the Chief Minister.
“Yediyurappa only said that he is not in position to speak anything on the issue and will have to abide by the decision of the high command. He did not say anything else,” Balehosur mutt’s Dingaleshwar Swamy, who led the delegation of pontiffs, said.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, he said “when we questioned Yediyurappa what really has happened, he said he will not comment on that and the high command’s decision is final. He did not say anything else.” “The unanimous opinion of the pontiffs is- don’t replace Yediyurappa. If it is done, you (BJP) will face bad consequences in the days to come. What is the need for a change? We are not against nurturing new leaders,” the swamiji added.
Over two dozen pontiffs from different parts of the state, clad in saffron attire, met Yediyurappa to express their support amid talks in some quarters of his exit in the near future. As many as 300-400 pontiffs are expected to gather in Bengaluru in a couple of days to discuss the “future course of action”, sources said.
Noting that their demand not to remove Yediyurappa is not because he is a Lingayat, the swamiji said it was because he is a good leader, has strived hard for the state and should be allowed to administer with cooperation from everyone. The seer said it was because of Yediyurappa and the efforts of his associates that the BJP has been able to come to power in Karnataka.
He said there is a feeling of pain among the pontiffs and people of the state that Yediyurappa, who has built BJP in Karnataka from the grass-roots level and brought it to power, was not allowed to run the administration for a complete term in the past and the same thing is getting repeated once again. “If in any situation Yediyurappa is replaced, the BJP will probably get decimated in Karnataka. This is not only our opinion, but of a majority of people of the state,” he added.