Bengaluru, June 7 : Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi on Sunday asserted that there was no proposal before the ruling BJP’s high command to seek Karnataka CM B.S. Yediyurappa‘s resignation.
“There is no proposal before the high command for seeking Yediyurappa’s resignation,” Joshi told reporters at Hubballi in the state’s northwest region hours after the Chief Minister said that he was ready to resign if the party’s leadership wanted him to do so.
Joshi is BJP’s fourth-term Lok Sabha member from Dharwad constituency, about 430km northwest of Bengaluru.
Ruling out change of leadership, Joshi said the party was focused only on containing the Covid pandemic’s second wave, which claimed 31,580 lives and infected 26,95,523 people across the southern state till Saturday.
“The party is seized of only one issue and that is how to handle the Covid-19 situation and not leadership change,” reiterated Joshi.
Echoing Joshi, party’s state unit president Nalin Kumar Kateel said there was no discussion on change in the Chief Minister’s post.
“As the party has not discussed the issue at any level, the question of a change of leadership does not arise,” Kateel told reporters at Mangaluru on the state’s west coast, about 375km from Bengaluru.
Kateel is the third-term Lok Sabha member from Dakshina Kannada seat.
Denying that attempts were being made to oust Yediyurappa by a faction of party’s members, Kateel said a meeting of all Legislators and Ministers would be convened this month in Bengaluru to sort out differences,if any.
“Yediyurappa will continue to be Chief Minister for the rest of the (Assembly) term, which is up to May 2023. He is our leader who has vast experience in governance and administration,” added Kateel.
State Revenue Minister R. Ashoka also told reporters here that Yediyurappa was the BJP’s legislative party leader and would continue in the top post.
“There is no question of leadership change in the state. Yediyurappa is leading the fight against the pandemic from the front, visiting hospitals and meeting Covid patients and holding meetings daily on containing the virus spread,” said Ashoka after meeting the chief minister at his official residence.
Yediyurappa,78, became Chief Minister for the fourth time on July 26, 2019 after the 14-month-old Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S)-Congress coalition government fell when its Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy resigned on losing the confidence vote in the state legislative assembly on July 23, 2019.
Though Yediyurappa took oath as chief minister for the third time on May 17, 2018, he resigned three days later on May 19, as the BJP was 8 seats short of a simple majority (113) in the 225-member lower house after the party won only 104 seats in the assembly elections three years ago.