Udayavni Special

Will not interfere in Cabinet expansion, says Yediyurappa


PTI, Jul 30, 2021, 9:36 AM IST

Bengaluru: Former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Thursday said he will not interfere in the Cabinet expansion exercise, and the incumbent Basavaraj Bommai was free to induct anyone he wants.

”Bommai has to go to Delhi to meet the PM and central leaders. Once he comes back, Bommai will decide. I will not interfere in anything,” Yediyurappa said in response to a question on the expansion of the new cabinet.

Speaking to reporters after meeting with Sangh Parivar leaders here, he said he has told all party leaders and ‘karyakartas’ that if they want to discuss ministership and other matters they should speak to the chief minister, and not pressurise him.

”I will not interfere for any reason. Whomever Basavaraj Bommai feels appropriate, he has the complete freedom to induct them into his cabinet and work. I will not interfere,” he added.

Meanwhile, indicating that expansion of his cabinet may take some time, Bommai on Thursday said he will discuss it with the party’s central leadership.

Bommai, who was elected as the new leader of the BJP legislature party on Tuesday, following Yediyurappa’s resignation, took charge as the new chief minister on Wednesday.

Responding to a question on senior BJP leader and former chief minister Jagadish Shettar’s decision not to be part of the new cabinet, the Lingayat strong man said, ”he (Shettar) came to me and spoke to me. He said he will not continue in the new cabinet as he wants to make way for youngsters.”

To a question on ”worry” among legislators who had joined BJP after quitting Congress-JD(S) coalition in 2019, about making it to the new cabinet, he said, ”I will speak to Bommai, he will think about giving positions to those who are responsible to bring this government. I will give my suggestions.”

Ending months of speculation over his exit, Yediyurappa on Monday stepped down as the chief minister, coinciding with his government completing two years in office.

Noting that he has discussed with Sangh Parivar leaders developmental works and other issues, the former CM said after Ganesh Chaturthi (September 10) he has decided to visit a district every week, tour there, organise party workers meeting and identify suitable candidate, where they don’t have one.

”The aim is to strengthen the organisation, win 135-140 seats in the next assembly election and bring the party back to power,” he said in the coming days without any power or position he wants to do good work.

Yediyurappa also appreciated Bommai’s cabinet decisions regarding a scholarship programme for farmers’ children and an increase in pension for senior citizens, widows and disabled, under social security schemes.

”It is a good decision, he (Bommai) spoke to me in the morning. Congress and others only speak about the poor, farmers and backward classes, but we have tried to provide benefits, within the financial limitations,” he said.

Yediyurappa said he will be visiting the family of his supporter at Bommalapura in Gundlupet taluk in Chamarajanagara district on Friday, who had allegedly committed suicide ‘pained’ by his resignation.

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