Rebels or Cadres? Shah holds urgent meet, soon after K’taka verdict 

NEW DELHI:  The BJP President Amit Shah held a closed door meeting in the national capital soon after the supreme court upheld the disqualification of 17 rebel Karnataka’s MLA but allowing them to go for re-election.

The meeting by Shah was also attended by BJP leaders hailing from Karnataka. The agenda of the meeting was to decide on how many of the rebels should get BJP tickets, who shall be excluded, if at all and how it can ensured that their disaffection due to exclusion doesn’t harm the BJP-led Karnataka government in the state.

The BJP is facing a peculiar situation in Karnataka where many of its own workers and ticket hopefuls are apprehensive of being shunned in move to ‘reward’ the rebel MLAs. Their already growing murmurs of discontent among the state cadre who feel BJP may sacrifice their political ambitions for ‘outsider’ rebels.

Party’s prominent leader from South P Murlidhar Rao, who is also the National General secretary of BJP said in a statement, “The Hon. Supreme Court’s decision to allow the disqualified MLAs of Karnataka to contest the bypoll is a welcome step. It is not about politics, it is about constitutional rights which we all have to welcome.”

Sources say, this meeting will be followed by a meeting between Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa and Amit Shah, whose time and venue is not yet decided.

Fourteen rebel MLAs of the Congress and three of the JDS were disqualified under the anti-defection law by the Speaker in July that led to toppling of Congress-JDS government in the state and brought in a BJP government led by Yediyurappa.

The by-polls of Karnataka assembly seats, which became vacant following the disqualification of MLAs, are scheduled to be held on December 5.

If the ruling BJP which currently has 106 MLAs, manages to win 6 of the 15 seats, it will cross the half mark (leaving out Maski and RR Nagar) and be in a majority.
IANS

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