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With Yediyurappa's Exit On the Cards, BL Santhosh Might Be Next Karnataka CM

·2 min read

With the countdown for the change of guard nearing, the BJP top brass is contemplating to recommend the incumbent national general secretary (organisation) of the party, BL Santhosh, as the successor of Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa.

The speculation about change of guard gained unprecedented momentum in the state after the 78-year-old Lingayat strongman and the BJP's ageing mascot in Karnataka, on Friday, 23 July, said that he would abide by the party high-command's decision whether to remain as chief minister or to quit.

"Our party leaders will inform me on Sunday (July 25) evening and I will follow their diktat on Monday (July 26), as I will be completing two years in the office," he had stated on July 23.

Also Read: Nadda Gives Thumbs Up to Yediyurappa, Ignores Question on Leadership Change

Who Will Be the New Deputy CMs?

According to top level BJP functionaries in New Delhi, apart from Santhosh, the top brass is also mulling over four deputy chief ministers retaining Laxman Suvadi, who belongs to the Lingayat community, which is one of the biggest in Karnataka comprising nearly 15 percent of the state's population.

One of the functionaries said that Yediyurappa will be resigning on Monday after citing his ill-health as reason during the BJP's legislator's meeting.

The functionary added that Santhosh, belonging to the Brahmin community, which is about 2 percent of the state's population, and in order to balance caste equations, the BJP top brass has come out with four DCM formula –Lingayat, Vokkaliga, OBC and SC/ST – to placate all prominent communities in the state.

The functionary further elaborated that among the three incumbent DCMs, in all probability, Laxman Suvadi is likely to continue, while C N Ashwath Narayan, belonging to the Vokkaliga community, may be replaced with former Karnataka Chief Minister DV Sadananda Gowda, who is one of the 12 Union ministers dropped by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Also Read: Is PM Narendra Modi on a Weaker Footing in Parliament's Monsoon Session?

The functionary added that first time MLA, Rupali Naik from Karwar who belongs to OBC Maratha community, is likely to clinch the post of deputy chief minister under the OBC category.

It is yet to be decided whether to appoint an SC or an ST leader for the deputy chief minister post, in order to shore up a sizeable chunk of the SC/ST votes in the state.

The functionary added that the new chief minister will be sworn in along with others in a day or two after 26 July.

Also Read: BS Yediyurappa Hints at Exit: Who Will Be Karnataka's Next Chief Minister?

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