Just ahead of BJP’s Karnataka in-charge Arun Singhs three-day visit to the southern state, the partys state unit chief Nalin Kumar Kateel said on Wednesday that there is no question of a change in leadership in Karnataka as incumbent Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa will be at the helm of affairs till the next Assembly polls scheduled in 2023.
Kateel told reporters that Singh is coming to Karnataka (on Wednesday) to discuss with various leaders and legislators the issues concerning each individual, and not about a leadership change in the state.
He said that all those who have issues can meet Singh and discuss their cases individually, as the latter will be in the state for the next two days.
However, Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister K.S. Eshwarappa told reporters earlier that he would be lying if he said that there are no problems in Karnataka BJP.
“Yes, certainly the ruling party is facing some problems. That is the sole reason why Singh is arriving here for three days. A section in our party wants Yediyurappa to step down, while another section is backing him to the hilt. This is not at all a secret anymore,” he said in response to a question.
Eshwarappa also said that he has full faith in the BJP’s internal mechanism, which is capable of stemming out any sort of rebellion in the party.
“Singh’s arrival is a sign that the BJP is willing to hear both sides of the case and then take a final call. As the party high command is strong, everyone will fall in line if the directions come from the top,” he said.
Eshwarappa added that ministers, MLAs and BJP office-bearers will be allowed to meet Singh during his visit.
Meanwhile, Minister for Muzrai and Backward Classes Welfare, Kota Srinivas Poojary, also asserted that there is no question of discussing leadership change with Singh.
“What is the need for replacing Yediyurappa at this point,” he asked.
He, however, conceded that the ruling party is facing several issues which need urgent hearing from the party high command.
“Like every family, we too are facing problems and these issues need the intervention of the elders. Singh is not coming to the state for the first time. Whenever he visits Karnataka, he comes up with new ideas that the party needs to implement here. So unless I meet him, I won’t be able to tell exactly why he is coming,” Poojary said in response to a question.
Singh is likely to hold a meeting with the state ministers later on Wednesday. On Thursday, he will be meeting Karnataka BJP leaders, before addressing the party’s core committee on Friday.
On June 11, Singh had ruled out replacing Yediyurappa.