KS Eshwarappa skips PM Modi’s rally in Shivamogga, leaves BJP red-faced

The 75-year-old former deputy chief minister, who turned down the invitation to attend the event, was instead seen visiting maths of various communities.


Published Mar 18, 2024 | 7:10 PMUpdatedMar 18, 2024 | 7:10 PM

KS Eshwarappa during BJP's Vijaya Sankalpa Yatra in Mysuru. (Twitter)

In an embarrassment to the party, senior BJP leader KS Eshwarappa, who has raised a banner of revolt over denial of ticket to his son to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections from Haveri, on Monday, 18 March, skipped Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Shimoga (Shivamogga).

The 75-year-old former deputy chief minister, who turned down the invitation to attend the event, was seen visiting maths of various communities.

Eshwarappa has announced that he will contest as an independent candidate from Shimoga (Shivamogga) in the coming Lok Sabha polls, blaming veteran BJP leader BS Yediyurappa and his son BY Vijayendra, who is the state BJP President, for his son KE Kantesh being denied ticket.

Also Read: BJP leader Sadananda Gowda expresses displeasure over ticket denial

Eshwarappa firm on his stance

Yediyurappa’s son and sitting MP BY Raghavendra is the BJP candidate from Shimoga, and Eshwarappa is firm on contesting against him despite efforts by the party leaders to pacify him.

Eshwarappa, a former BJP state president, Yediyurappa and former Union Minister late HN Ananth Kumar were widely credited with building the party from the grassroots in Karnataka. Yediyurapa and Eshwarappa hail from Shivamogga district.

Eshwarappa has alleged that Yediyurappa, who is a member of the Parliamentary Board, had promised Kantesh a ticket to contest from Haveri but betrayed him.

Yediyurappa has denied the charge, saying candidates are finalised by the party’s central election committee and he had no role in it.

BJP leaders, including party national general secretary and State poll in-charge Radha Mohan Das Agarwal, met Eshwarappa to persuade him to change his decision. However, he stood his ground.

Also Read: Cops arrest three for assaulting shopkeeper over playing loud music during Azaan

‘State BJP in the clutches of the Yediyurappa family’

Former Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai has got BJP’s Haveri ticket.

Eshwarappa has alleged that the BJP in Karnataka is in the clutches of the Yediyurappa family, and has claimed that his fight was to “save the party and its ideology” in the state on behalf of “hurt party workers”, and to make Narendra Modi Prime Minister once again.

He has also said that several Hindutva leaders were being neglected by Yediyurappa and Vijayendra.

Speaking to reporters, Vijayendra expressed confidence about the Eshwarappa revolt issue getting resolved, and said it was natural for aspirants to get upset on not getting the ticket to contest elections.

Acknowledging Eshwarappa’s contribution in building and strengthening the BJP in Karnataka, he said the candidates for Lok Sabha polls were decided by the party’s national leadership, and it was not his decision.

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