Hours after the portfolio allocation of Cabinet ministers in Karnataka, signs of rebellion within the BJP emerged, with Vokkaliga leader and Chikmagalur MLA CT Ravi posting a series of tweets late on Monday.
The B S Yediyurappa-led government has appointed three deputy chief ministers among the 17 ministers inducted. Leaders like KS Eshwarappa and R Ashok, who served as deputy chief ministers in earlier BJP-led governments, were not accommodated this time.
Former Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar and former Deputy Chief Ministers KS Eshwarappa and R Ashoka have been given plump portfolios of Large and medium scale industries, Rural Development and Panchayat Raj, Revenue department respectively as if to mask their demotion in the scheme of things.
Supporters and followers of Eshwarappa issued a warning and said side-lining the minister was an “insult”. They threatened to “hit back” at the party if Eshwarappa isn’t given the deputy chief minister’s post in the coming days.
The appointment of Ashwath Narayan as deputy CM over CT Ravi might not go down well with some sections of the party either. However, in late-night tweets, Ravi said he was as much loyal to his “principle” as to the BJP.
Meanwhile, a social media campaign has been launched demanding that Molkalmuru MLA B Sriramalu, a prominent Dalit face in the party, be made deputy chief minister. Sriramalu has been given the Health and Family Welfare portfolio. Govind Karjole, one of the three deputy CMs, also hold charge of the coveted PWD ministry along with the Social Welfare Department.