BJP likely to change chief minister in Karnataka ahead of Assembly polls

According to sources, the party\'s central leadership is not happy over the performance of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai

Bengaluru: Keeping an eye on the Karnataka Assembly polls next year, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) top leadership is mulling to change the Chief Minister again in order to bring a more dynamic face.

According to sources, the party's central leadership is not happy over the performance of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. Since the party is busy in the elections of the five states, the decision in this regard could be taken once the polls conclude.

Sources said BJP high command is unhappy over defeat in by-elections and local body polls, including in Bommai's own constituency Hanagal in Haveri district. This left the top leadership worried about the 2023 Assembly polls. Further, the resentment of several state Ministers and MLAs against the Chief Minister intensified the cloud of worries.

The BJP high command may select a young face ahead of the Assembly polls slated for the next year. The new face can be from the politically-influential Panchamasaali Lingayath community. The party may also go for Dalit face for the Chief Ministerial post.

On the other hand, there have been talks of cabinet restructuring where many senior Ministers like KS Eshwarappa, Murugesh Nirani, CC Patil and Prabhu Chauhan are likely to be dropped. Also, four berths in the state cabinet are vacant and 40 MLAs are lobbying for that. There are also reports that several MLAs, especially those who migrated from JDS and Congress, are in touch with the parties.

Top BJP sources said the high command may change the Chief Minister first and then restructure the cabinet in order to strengthen the state unit.

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