Bengaluru, Dec 21 (Aryavarth) Scotching rumours about JD(S) merger with BJP, Karnataka chief minister, B. S. Yediyurappa on Monday directed his party members not to issue any statements on rumours of possible merger of the JD(S) with the BJP.
Speaking to reporters here, Yediyurappa said that JD(S) had been giving its support and co-operation to the ruling BJP on “select issues” and that is neither an indication nor an intent of merging with the party.
“There are still two and a half years until the election. Therefore, it is neither right on my part nor anyone to talk on the issue of merger. Let them (JDS) build theirs and let us focus on building ours,” he said.
He added that JD(S) has given cooperation on the issue of removing the legislative council chairman and in the coming days too they may give us cooperation if needed.
Meanwhile, Karnataka BJP spokesperson, Captain Ganesh Karnik said in his statement that the merger news doing the rounds in print and electronic media is baseless, malicious and misleading with a sinister design. “The BJP rejects the false news with the contempt it deserves,” he said.
He added that when the party is in the middle of Gram Panchayat elections and absolutely sure of winning 80 per cent of seats, this unwanted controversy has erupted. “This senseless debate has erupted at this crucial juncture and the party rejects this baseless rumors,” he said.
A section of media started speculating about merger soon after JD(S) second-in-command, H. D. Kumarswamy and Yediyurappa met twice at latter’s official residence and in the meanwhile both leaders softened their stand against each other too.
Besides this, JD(S) extended support for the passage of the land reforms bill in the Legislative council after initially opposing it and the regional party also extended its support to BJP in its no-confidence motion against Council Chairman did add to the speculation.
However, it was BJP vice president Arvind Limbavali’s reply to a question about merger on Sunday that was seen as adding credence to the speculation.
“I too have heard about the merger through the media, I will try to know more about it,” he had said.
But prior to this statement, Limbavali had said that political polarisation will take place ahead of Assembly polls as there is a clear wave in favour of PM Narendra Modi and BJP in the country and in Karnataka too it will happen, he had said.
However, a section of the media termed this as an indication from the BJP that JD(S) will be merged with it ahead of elections.
Hearing this, JD(S) and BJP top leaders rushed to damage control mode and issued statements after statements clarifying that merger wasn’t on the cards.