Bommai to be BJP’s CM candidate in poll-bound Karnataka

"Bommai is the Chief Minister. We are going to contest the elections when he is the Chief Minister. He is the Chief Ministerial candidate. There is no doubt," the party's state incharge Arun Singh said.

Bengaluru: The BJP’s central leadership is pleased with the performance of Basavaraj Bommai, the party’s in-charge for Karnataka Arun Singh said on Sunday, and made it clear that he will be its Chief Ministerial candidate in the poll-bound State.

“They are very happy with Bommai, the kind of work he is doing,” the party national General Secretary told PTI in an interview.

Singh was asked about the assessment of the party’s central leadership on the performance of the Chief Minister Bommai, the role of BJP strongman B S Yediyurappa, the party’s prospects in the Assembly elections, just a few months away, and whether it would project a Chief Ministerial candidate.

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He said the BJP would create “history” in Karnataka by exceeding its own target of winning 150 Assembly seats of the total 224, as he highlighted the welfare and development schemes of the Modi and Bommai governments.

Singh said the ruling party would fight the polls under the leadership of Bommai and guidance of Yediyurappa, a four-time Chief Minister and currently a member of the party’s central parliamentary board.

“Bommai is the Chief Minister. We are going to contest the elections when he is the Chief Minister. He is the Chief Ministerial candidate. There is no doubt,” Singh said.

Describing Bommai, who replaced Yediyurappa as Chief Minister in July last year, as a simple, down-to-earth and polite man, Singh pointed to the former being referred to as “common man’s CM” and said he has been drawing good response in public meetings.

“People of Karnataka feel he (Bommai) is like them”, he said.

Yediyurappa is the “tallest” leader in Karnataka, and the BJP has his “guidance”: Yediyurappa is touring the State to energise the party’s cadre and is seeking votes to win 150 seats. “It’s a big thing”, Singh said.

On what the party is doing to deepen its base in Old Mysuru region (comprising districts such as Mandya, Ramanagara and Hassan), the traditional strongholds of the Congress and JD(S), he said the BJP has increased its tally multifold in the Gram Panchayat elections there.

“Our strength has increased considerably (in the region),” he said. “We will do ‘chamatkar’ (miracle) in Old Mysuru region this time.”

He claimed that many leaders from the Congress and JD(S) in the Old Mysuru region, and ‘Kalyana Karnataka’ region (which includes districts like Bidar, Raichur and Kalaburagi) are going to join his party as they know that it’s going to be the BJP that will form the government and “the future is with the BJP.”

Singh sought to ridicule the Congress for setting itself a target of winning 150 seats in the State.

“They have been saying so (setting ambitious targets) in Goa, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Manipur (before the last Assembly elections). They are wiped out. In Goa, out of 11 Congress MLAs, eight have left. ‘Quit Congress Abhiyaan’ is going on in the country.”

The Rajya Sabha member termed the Rahul Gandhi-led ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ a “flop yatra”.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Siasat staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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