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BJP leader Savadi all set to join Cong ahead of Karnataka polls

Savadi has been nursing a grudge over BJP's choice of Mahesh Kumatahalli as the official candidate from Athani seat. The BJP candidate had defeated Savadi in 2018 from Athani on a Congress ticket.

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Bengaluru: Disgruntled BJP leader and former Deputy Chief Minister Laxman Savadi is all set to join Congress party after the saffron party denied him ticket to contest from Athani in May 10 assembly election in Karnataka.

“He is resigning (from primary membership of the BJP) at 4 pm, and joining the party (Congress) at 4.30 pm. He is now our family member,” Karnataka Congress President DK Shivakumar told reporters here.

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Before making this announcement, Savadi met top Congress leaders Randeep Singh Surjewala, Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah at the latter’s residence, and held discussions on the matter.

Soon after the meeting, Savadi said he is joining the Congress without laying any conditions. “I held a long discussion with (Randeep Singh) Surjewala, DK Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah. I haven’t put any conditions. I will contest from Athani constituency,” he said.

“Secondly, after the party comes to power I want those developmental works to be taken up that have come to a halt. I have asked this much. They have agreed. Apart from this I haven’t put any conditions. I haven’t asked for a ticket for my son; my wife, and my brother,” he said.

Savadi has been nursing a grudge over BJP’s choice of Mahesh Kumatahalli as the official candidate from Athani seat. The BJP candidate had defeated Savadi in 2018 from Athani on a Congress ticket.

After a year, Kumatahalli, along with other MLAs including Ramesh Jarkiholi, defected from the Congress and brought down the JDS-Congress coalition government led by HD Kumaraswamy.

For this role, the BJP rewarded Kumatahalli a ticket, overlooking Savadi for the May 10 assembly election.

Savadi was one blue-eyed boy of BS Yediyurappa, and one of the most senior Lingayat leaders in the state.

Meanwhile, Union Minister Pralhad Joshi said the party has advised Savadi not to join Congress because it is a “use and throw” party.

“A Mistake” 

Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Friday said Laxman Savadi joining Congress is a mistake.

Savadi should not join Congress after spending many years in BJP since it is infested with internal fights, CM told reporters here.

Despite losing elections, the party made him MLC and Deputy Chief Minister, Karnataka BJP in-charge Arun Singh said.

Bommai also said Congress does not have candidates to contest from 60 constituencies and that is why they are inducting candidates from other parties.

“As expected, the ruling party will have too many ticket aspirants. He (Savadi) has decided to join Congress because he sees the future in that party … This will not make any difference to the BJP’s prospects. We will do our work. Surely, the BJP will win, and soon we are releasing the third list,” he said.

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