BJP in damage control mode in Karnataka

Written by Political Bureau | Bangalore | Updated: Oct 8 2010, 05:30am hrs
BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday said the government led by BS Yeddyurappa will win the confidence motion to be moved on October 11. We are confident of proving our majority, he told reporters in Bangalore.

Naidu rushed to Bangalore for damage control and save the government as it was reduced to a minority, with 19 legislators including seven ministers, withdrawing their support on Wednesday.

He said he was confident the crisis would be defused and the dissidents would return to the party fold.

Naidu said the grievances of the rebel MLAs are being looked into and the party was directly talking to the dissidents to resolve the issue.

He also reminded those MLAs who had directly submitted a letter to Governor HR Bhardwaj that the party could invoke the anti-defection laws against them.

Meanwhile, one of the dissident MLAs, SK Bellubbi, deserted the dissident camp and expressed loyalty to the government. BJP sources said Bellubbi is likely to be made a minister, along with dissident BJP MLAs Beluru Gopalakrishna and HS Shankaralinge Gowda in order to win over the rebels. Ministers S Suresh Kumar, VS Acharya and B Sriramulu have offered to quit, if required, to make way for induction of new faces.

Sources also said the minister of information technology, biotechnology and housing, Katta Subramanya Naidu, facing allegations of corruption when he was industries minister, is likely to be dropped. Sugar and horticulture minister SA Ravindranatha and mass education and public libraries minister Revu Naik may also likely to be asked to quit, if the need arises, to accommodate more aspirants into the Cabinet.