BS Yediyurappa leaves for Delhi to discuss Karnataka Cabinet expansion with Narendra Modi

While several BJP leaders are waiting for a chance to be inducted into the state Cabinet, those who defected from the Congress and JD(S) are also aspiring for ministerial berths

Press Trust of India September 17, 2020 16:32:43 IST
BS Yediyurappa leaves for Delhi to discuss Karnataka Cabinet expansion with Narendra Modi

File image of Karnataka chief minister BS Yediyurappa. PTI

Kalaburagi: Karnataka chief minister BS Yediyurappa on Thursday said the much-awaited expansion of his Cabinet will be discussed during his visit to New Delhi, where he will also be meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other Union ministers regarding the development of the state.

Yediyurappa, who was in Kalaburagi to take part in Kalyana Karnataka Utsav programme, left for Delhi.

"I'm directly going to Delhi from here, I will be there tomorrow and the day after. Prime Minister has given time, seven to eight ministers (Union Ministers) have also given time (for meeting)," Yediyurappa said.

Speaking to reporters, he said during the visit he will hold discussions regarding Cabinet expansion and the development of the state.

"I will meet concerned Ministers and the Prime minister... I will return to Bengaluru on 19 September," he added.

During the visit, Yediyurappa is expected to meet top BJP leaders including BJP national president JP Nadda, during which the discussion on Cabinet expansion is likely to come up, party sources said.

Cabinet expansion or reshuffle is expected to be a tightrope walk for the 77-year-old leader, considering too many aspirants.

While several of the old guard are waiting for a chance to be inducted into the ministry, those who defected from the Congress and JD(S) like AH Vishwanath, R Shankar and MTB Nagaraj, who are now BJP MLCs, are also aspiring for slots.

The Cabinet currently has 28 members and six berths are still vacant.

There are also strong speculations about the possible change in leadership in the future, considering Yediyurappa's age.

However it has been rejected by senior party leaders like its state president Nalin Kumar Kateel, Minister R Ashoka among others.

Flood relief, development projects related to states and GST compensation are the key issues that are likely to figure during the chief minister's meeting with Modi and Union ministers.

Karnataka has estimated the loss due to the recent floods to be around Rs 8,071 crore, and is seeking for enhanced relief from the Centre.

The BJP-ruled Karnataka has opted for the first among the two options provided by the Centre for borrowing, to meet the shortfall in GST revenues, under which the state will be eligible for total compensation of Rs 18,289 crore.

Yediyurappa's travel to Delhi, comes ahead of the Monsoon Session of the Karnataka legislature from 21 to 30 September, during which the Opposition has decided to corner the government on flood and COVID-19 management, financial condition of the state, among other things.

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