Nobody can finish me off politically, says Yediyurappa after late invitation for party event

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, meanwhile, rubbished reports of differences with his predecessor Yediyurappa.

ByMahesh M Goudar

Published Dec 15, 2022 | 6:35 PM Updated Dec 15, 2022 | 6:36 PM

Yediyurappa

Karnataka BJP strongman BS Yediyurappa on Thursday, 15 December, dismissed reports that he was being sidelined in the party and claimed he had his own strength and nobody could finish him off politically.

The statement came after Yediyurappa received a late invitation for the inauguration of the party’s office in the Koppal district of Karnataka. BJP national president JP Nadda attended the event.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, meanwhile, rubbished reports of differences with Yediyurappa — his predecessor.

“There is no truth in the statement that I am being neglected. I am attending all the programmes,” Yediyurappa told reporters in Bengaluru before leaving for the district headquarters town of Koppal.

Sources close to him said Yediyurappa had initially decided not to attend the Koppal event. However, he said on Thursday morning he would participate in the programme.

He said there was no need for people to invite him as it was his duty to attend party programmes.

Asked if he was not willing to go there because he got an invitation at the last minute, Yediyurappa said on Thursday, “There is no truth in it. I was not in a position yesterday to go there. Because there was a pressure to attend the event, I decided to participate”.

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When asked whether there was any attempt to finish him off politically, the party veteran said, “There is no truth in it. No one can finish off anyone. I have my own strength. I have strengthened the party and toiled to bring the BJP to power. The entire state knows this.”

He said everyone knew he was among the important people who worked for the BJP day and night. Hence, there was no point in talking about whether he was being neglected.

‘He is a father figure’

On the allegations of not giving an official invitation for BJP national president JP Nadda’s programme to Yediyurappa, Bommai said, “He is my mentor. The relationship between him and me is like a father and son. We are one family.”

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. (BasavarajSBommai/Facebook)

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. (BasavarajSBommai/Facebook)

He added: “Yediyurappa is the supreme leader and all the programmes and party events will be held under his headship. The former chief minister took part in the party’s event. There is no dissent within the party.”

Bommai also said: “It is a big lie that the invitation was not given to Yediyurappa for any function. He is not upset with the state leaders.”

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Nadda inaugurated 10 new district party offices and also virtually laid the foundation stone for the construction of three new party offices — in the Vijayapura, Kodagu, and Uttara Kannada districts — in Koppal on Thursday.

He virtually inaugurated the new district party offices in Ballari, Raichur, Bidar, Vijayapura, Bagalkot, Kolar, Chamarajanagar, Haveri, and Gadag.

With regard to Karnataka Congress communication chairman Priyank Kharge’s statement that the BJP was a house with three doors, Bommai said, “The Congress house has neither doors nor windows. Everything is open at the grand old party. There are no differences in Karnataka’s BJP unit.”

‘BJP will retain Karnataka’

Speaking to reporters in Koppal, Yediyurappa said the BJP under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah would come back to power with 140 seats in Karnataka.

“The BJP is one and united. Our party will come to power. So we need people’s blessings,” the former chief minister said. He also ruled out the possibility of becoming chief minister again.

“I don’t have ambition for power. I have just one desire to bring the BJP to power again for which we all are working together,” Yediyurappa said.

Regarding his son BY Vijayendra’s electoral debut in the next Assembly elections, Yediyurappa said, “I have told Vijayendra to contest from Shikaripura. He will contest from the place decided by the party. The BJP’s decision will be final.”

Nadda bolsters BJP in poll-bound Karnataka

Meanwhile, BJP national president JP Nadda on Thursday alleged all parties, except the BJP, had come to power to serve their families and earn through commission.

“Right from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, everyone in the BJP toils day and night to serve the people and to change their image and destiny,” said Nadda.

He said the Congress in Karnataka was dividing communities and knows nothing about development.

“The Congress does not know what development is. It knows only one thing: how to come to power and use it for its purpose and earn through commission. The Congress cannot think beyond this. Is it not the history here?”

(With inputs from PTI)