Bangalore: Lok Sabha member D V Sadananda Gowda was on Thursday sworn-in as Chief Minister of Karnataka, succeeding B S Yeddyurappa, who quit in the wake of the Lokayukta report on illegal mining that indicted him.

Governor H R Bhardwaj administered the oath of office to 58-year-old Devaragunda Venkappa Sadananda Gowda at the Raj Bhavan. He is the 26th Chief Minister of the state and the second BJP member after Yeddyurappa to hold the position.

Gowda will have a term of 22 months. Elections are due in the state in May 2013.

Yeddyurappa resigned on Sunday following the diktat of the party's central leadership in the wake of the damning report, after being in office for 38 months.

Earlier, Gowda drove to Yeddyurappa's residence and later visited Jagadish Shettar, whom he defeated in a secret ballot at the BJP legislature party meeting on Wednesday.

He sought the cooperation of MLAs who backed his opponent when they were having breakfast. The Shettar camp told him not to come under Yeddyurappa's influence.

"We appealed to him not to become a puppet and discharge his responsibilities under the stranglehold...," Shettar camp follower and MLA, Arvind Limbavali, said. He was apparently referring to Yeddyurappa.

Outgoing Home and Transport Minister R Ashoka, part of the Shettar-Ananth Kumar faction, said Shettar has rejected the deputy Chief Minister's post, and there was no question of accepting the offer.

Rival faction boycott swearing-in ceremony

The rebel BJP faction in Karnataka headed by Jagadish Shettar on Thursday boycotted the swearing-in ceremony of new Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda, again bringing into sharp focus the deep division in the ruling party.

However, a glum-faced Ananth Kumar and the party's state unit chief K S Eshwarappa, the two leaders who propped up Shettar against Gowda, who is outgoing chief minister B S Yeddyurappa's choice, were present in the Raj Bhavan.

Earlier Gowda drove to Shettar's residence, where MLAs backing him were having breakfast, and invited them to attend the swearing-ceremony at Raj Bhavan but it didn't work as the sulking legislators boycotted the event.

In sharp contrast, Yeddyurappa's camp was jubilant as he appeared relaxed and shared some light moments with MLAs supporting him and repeatedly flashed the "victory" sign.

Gowda had defeated Shettar in a secret ballot at the Legislature party meeting on Wednesday.

(Agencies)