Bangalore: Scam-hit former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa mocked his Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) central leadership and blamed party general secretary HN Ananth Kumar for the crisis in the faction-ridden party at the national and state levels. (Agencies)
"After former Prime Minister AB Vajpayee retired from active politics, the party has been floundering in the absence of a statesman leadership. It is regrettable that the party president (Nitin Gadkari) is unable to take firm action against some leaders working against the party's interests. If steps are not taken to set right things, the party will face debacle at the national level," a bitter Yeddyurappa told reporters after a meeting with his loyalists at his new office in the city.
Lashing out at Ananth Kumar, the MP from Bangalore South constituency, for the crisis in the party at the national and state level, Yeddyurappa said the general secretary was playing spoilsport and damaging the party by influencing the leadership negatively.
"Though senior leader LK Advani has been leading the party after Vajpayee and is capable of taking correct decisions, Kumar has been thwarting him from resolving the crisis in the party by misguiding our national leaders and trying to dominate the party," Yeddyurappa asserted.
Claiming that prominent national leaders in the party like former cabinet ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie were sidelined and the party's leaders in parliament Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley suppressed from providing leadership, Yeddyurappa accused Ananth Kumar of influencing Gadkari and forcing him to act according to his whims and fancies.
"In the recent biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha from the state, Ananth Kumar forced the party leadership to select former IAS official Ramakrishna ignoring party leaders such as Nirmala Sitaraman from contesting," recalled the party's first Chief Minister in south India.
Refuting reports in a section of the media that he would be quitting the party to join the Congress, Yeddyurappa said such rumours should be treated with contempt as they were floated or planted by his adversaries like Ananth Kumar.
"I am not quitting the party. Why should I? After all, I have worked for the party and built it over the years to bring it to power for the first time in south India and Karnataka and served the state for over five-six years as deputy Chief Minister and Chief Minister twice from February 2006 to July 2011," he observed.
Asked if he would participate in the party's national executive meeting in Mumbai May 24-25, Yeddyurappa said as he no longer held any post in the party or the BJP government in the state, he would skip it as he was now only an ordinary party worker and a lawmaker in the state legislative assembly.
"I don't want to attend the (national executive) meeting since I am disappointed with the way higher-ups are functioning. Though I tried to seek the president's intervention to resolve the crisis in the party's state unit, he (Gadkari) failed to honour the assurance he had given earlier and did not take any action against Ananth Kumar for indulging in anti-party activities," Yeddyurappa added.
Lauding Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as a dynamic leader and for providing good governance in the western state, Yeddyurappa claimed that even Modi was peeved at the functioning of the party central leadership, which has been hijacked by a coterie around Gadkari and Advani and led by Ananth Kumar.
Bangalore: Scam-hit former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa mocked his Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) central leadership and blamed party general secretary HN Ananth Kumar for the crisis in the faction-ridden party at the national and state levels.