Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday said there was a rationale and a lot of thought process went behind denying tickets to party leaders for the May 10 Karnataka Assembly election.
“The party takes the decision based on a lot of factors. They are not tainted and all the party leaders are respectable. We also talked to them about why they were denied tickets,” he said.
Some of the factors behind the party's decision include the requirement for new blood and a generational change, and repeated there should be no speculation the party leaders were “tainted”.
“The Bharatiya Janata Party always believes in change,” he told the India Today Karnataka Roundtable 2023 Saturday, “The change was less in Karnataka,” he added.
'We are not Rajiv Gandhi...'
“We are not Rajiv Gandhi sacking Veerendra Patil at the airport. These are party workers who have worked for the party for years, so we will, of course, talk to them beforehand,” he said.
Shah’s statement comes amid the controversy in the state BJP with prominent leaders leaving the party after not getting tickets. Former CM Jagadish Shettar and ex-deputy CM Laxman Savadi left the party and joined the Congress on denial of tickets.
Taking a jibe at the grand old party, the Union minister said, “If the Congress thinks they will win the election because Shettar joined them, they at least acknowledge they could not win alone. Moreover, it was just Shettar who had joined Congress, neither our vote bank and nor party workers. The BJP is intact and we will return with a huge majority.”
On the outcome of the election, Shah said: “Purna bahumat se jeetenge...” And he reasoned saying that the schemes and initiatives introduced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi have benefitted the common man. “The one crore people of Karnataka believe the BJP is working for them,” he added.
On the controversial issue of reservation for Muslims, Shah said, “The Constitution does not allow reservations on the basis of religion. Thus, the BJP government in Karnataka ended this practice and worked for the OBC reservation. The state government ended special favours aimed at political gains and brought the Constitution in order.”
On the corruption and 40 per cent commission, he said the accusations needed to be proved as there was no truth.
“FIRs and complaints have been lodged. However, the accusations could never be proved. It was an effort by the Congress to shift the corruption blame onto us,” the minister said.
(To receive our E-paper on WhatsApp daily, please click here. To receive it on Telegram, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)