After pushback, BJP gives BY Vijayendra space to shine as rally convenor in poll-bound Karnataka

Beginning 20 February, the Karnataka BJP under Vijayendra is expected to organise conventions of various morchas in 224 Assembly segments.

ByMahesh M Goudar

Published Feb 14, 2023 | 5:11 PMUpdatedFeb 14, 2023 | 8:13 PM

BJP state vice-president B Y Vijayendra.

With an aim to retain power in Karnataka, BJP state vice-president BY Vijayendra is all set to kickstart district-level conventions from 20 February.

Interestingly, the new campaign under BY Vijayendra — who has only now been given space to shine in the run-up to the elections in Karnataka by the BJP — will begin from the Vokkaliga heartland of Mandya.

The BJP high command has appointed Vijayendra, the younger son of former chief minister BS Yediyurappa, as the convenor who will organise district-level conventions of various morchas (wings).

There are seven wings in the BJP: Yuva Morcha, Women Morcha, OBC Morcha, SC Morcha, ST Morcha, Raitha Morcha and Minority Morcha.

VIjayendra has been tasked with the responsibility of organising conventions of various morchas at the district level in a continuous outreach and motivational initiative.

Inside the BJP

Interestingly, the move to make Vijayendra convenor of the initiative comes in the backdrop of the party attempting to win back the favour of party veteran and former chief minister BS Yediyurappa.

After multiple internal surveys of the BJP pointed to disenchantment among its core vote base of Lingayats, owing to the Panchamasali reservation demand and the sidelining of BS Yediyurappa, the party has started taking corrective measures.

Vijayendra told reporters: “The party is stressing more on the old-Mysuru region. In order to win 150 seats in the forthcoming Assembly polls, the political strategy is being chalked out.”

He added: “These series of conventions being held in all the Assembly constituencies will strengthen the party at the grass root level ahead of the polls.”

The BJP leader also said: “The party has already named the convenors and co-convenors for every district. In order to register a historic win in the upcoming Assembly polls, all the morchas have to actively work for the party.”

Also read: Why is Vijayendra keenly waiting for Siddaramaiah to pick his seat?

Convention to start from Mandya

Beginning 20 February, under the leadership of Vijayendra, the BJP is expected to organise conventions of various morchas in all the 224 Assembly segments. The conventions are likely to conclude in mid-March.

Detailing about the conventions of various morchas, Vijayendra said: “We will kick-start with the Yuva Morcha convention in Mandya on 20 February. The party’s central leaders, including Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who has been appointed the party’s in-charge for the Karnataka Assembly polls, are expected to take part in the convention.”

He added: “The party registered a historic win in the Assembly bypoll in the KR Pete Assembly segment in Mandya. The party is stressing more on the old-Mysuru region. We have received an overwhelming response to Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s event in Mandya. The party is confident of dominating in the old-Mysuru region.”

The BJP high command had entrusted the responsibility of the 2019 KR Pete assembly bypoll to Vijayendra.

The party registered a thumping victory in the Vokkaliga-dominated seat.

Meanwhile, Vijayendra enjoys great popularity among the youths in the old-Mysuru region.

The saffron cadre has also planned to add around 50 lakh voters’ membership to the BJP during conventions of various morchas.

“We are aiming to reach over 2 crore voters through this convention,” stated the BJP state vice-president.

Countering anti-incumbency

On the anti-incumbency wave, Vijayendra said: “There are many challenges for the party going in the run-up to the Assembly polls. The central and state leaders of the party have already chalked out plans to overcome the anti-incumbency factor.”

He added: “We will ensure that all the Union and state government schemes reach the last person. Even the central party leadership has directed the state unit to present both the government’s achievements before the voters. We are confident of coming back to power in Karnataka.”

Asked what percent of the tickets would be given to youths and women in the coming polls, Vijayendra said: “The chief minister and the party high command will take a call on fielding suitable candidates.”

Yediyurappa has already declared that he will not be contesting in the upcoming Assembly polls.

Vijayendra is likely to contest from the Shikaripura Assembly segment.

It may be noted that in the 2018 Assembly polls, despite actively campaigning for the party, he was denied a ticket from the Varuna segment.

However, he refrained from answering questions about his candidacy in the upcoming Assembly polls.

Also read: Yediyurappa says BJP will decide on Vijayendra’s seat