Bengaluru: Stung by the Maharashtra and Haryana assembly poll results where the BJP, despite positive exit poll predictions, failed to secure a clear majority in either state, the party top brass has reportedly decided to give Lingayat strongman and Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa all the freedom he wants to choose candidates and devise strategies for the by-elections to 15 assembly constituencies due on December 5.
Sources in the party said that two reasons forced the central leadership to give more powers to Mr Yediyurappa. One, after the experiment in Maharashtra and Haryana, the top brass seems to have decided not to micro-manage events like by-elections. Mr Yediyurappa has therefore been asked to take full control of the by-polls from selecting candidates to devising the right strategy to ensure their victory.
Earlier, the central leadership had virtually thrust former minister and fellow Lingayat Laxman Savadi on Mr Yediyurappa by making him Deputy CM though he had lost the May, 2018 assembly polls. But they have now reportedly realised that Mr Savadi may not be the right choice to succeed the ageing Mr Yediyurappa. The central leadership has therefore grown cautious and has decided not take any more risks at this juncture fearing that it may jeopardise the victory prospects of the party in the bypolls.
For Mr Yediyurappa, a victory in no less than eight seats is crucial for him to make sure the ruling BJP crosses the 113-mark in the 224-member assembly and his government remains stable.
He is therefore not likely to leave any stone unturned to win as many seats as possible....