Bangalore: Decks were today cleared for the merger of B S Yeddyurappa-led Karnataka Janata Paksha with BJP as the two parties took steps to formalise their union.
After the Karnataka BJP core committee met, state party chief Prahlad Joshi said, “There is absolute consensus (about the entry of Yeddyurappa). There is no problem. Unanimously the state unit has decided that we have to fight (Lok Sabha) election together.”
The merger moves had gathered steam in recent weeks, with Yeddyurappa giving clear indications that it was only a matter of time before his return to BJP whose state leaders also got the green signal from the party top brass.
“KJP should merge with BJP, so that unitedly we can fight, because of the division of anti-Congress vote in last Assembly elections both of us have suffered, we don’t want to repeat it again,” Joshi added.
KJP had garnered six seats and 10 per cent vote share in the May 8 Assembly polls playing spoiler to the then ruling BJP, which lost its first ever government in the South. KJP had failed to make a big impact as an independent force.
Noting that state unit was unanimous on induction of Yeddyurappa, Joshi said, “He has already declared that he is ready to join BJP, which state unit has whole heartedly welcomed.”
To a question whether Yeddyurappa will be given any formal invitation, he said, “He has already declared that he is joining BJP, we are formally meeting (him) that’s all.”
On criticism by Congress and other opponents on re-induction of Yeddyurappa, Joshi said “… when allegations were made against him (Yeddyurappa) through some agency, then president of BJP and our central unit took a decision that when there are serious charges, he should not remain in position.”
But, he said, the party never took a stand that he should not remain in the BJP.
To a question on delay despite unanimity on Yeddyurappa’s induction, Joshi said, “Our central unit was supposed to clear all these things; yesterday it told us to formally meet and discuss his (Yeddyurappa’s) re-entry into the party and merger of KJP and BJP.
“As soon as we got the clearance from the central unit, we are moving ahead.”