Operation Lotus: Karnataka BJP sidelines Vokkaliga leader Ashoka, promotes Ashwath Narayana

First Published 16, Jan 2019, 5:54 PM IST
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Karnataka BJP sidelines Vokkaliga leader Ashoka, promotes Ashwath Narayana

The Karnataka BJP's Operation Lotus is making noise all over India, however one name that is missing during the entire episode is former deputy chief minister R Ashoka. The BJP this time instead has given importance to another Vokkaliga CN Ashwath Narayana. Ashwath Narayana was seen conversing with Congress MLA Umesh Jadhav is very evident that BJP planning to look beyond Ashoka who calls shots in Bengaluru

Bengaluru: The alleged differences between Karnataka BJP leaders R Ashoka and BS Yeddyurappa (BSY) has resulted in the former being sidelined in the ongoing Operation Lotus episode in the state.

Former chief minister BSY and Ashoka have had differences in the past and also recently, over the denial of ticket for Assembly polls to BSY's son BY Vijendra in Old Mysuru region which sources said was due to Ashoka. This has made BSY sideline Ashoka and give the responsibility to CN Ashwath Narayana from Bengaluru for Operation Lotus or Operation Kamala.

The Congress-JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka is in trouble over speculation of MLAs crossing over to the BJP. Already, two independent legislators have withdrawn their support.

Narayana, a Vokkaliga, is an MBBS degree holder and has won from Malleshwaram for the three times. It is believed that after the formation of the BJP government in Karnataka, BSY had decided to make Narayana a minister.

"R Ashoka was perceived as the undisputed king of BJP from Bengaluru as he was responsible for bringing the party to power in Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) in 2010 by securing over 100 wards out of 198. Although the BJP looked united, the cold war between BSY and Ashoka continued. In the entire Operation Kamala series, giving importance to CN Ashwath Narayana is evident that the BJP is looking beyond Ashoka and is grooming another Vokkaliga leader,” a top BJP source said.

As reported, a recent photograph of Narayana with Congress MLA Umesh Jadhav in a Mumbai hotel is evidence that he is getting a major push from the BJP.

Karnataka Congress spokesperson Kengal Renu lashed out at Narayana for attempting to woo the Congress MLA and said, “He is from DV Sadananda Gowda and BSY camp and to please the high command, he is resorting to this Operation Kamala.”