The veteran politician will be inducted into the saffron party at New Delhi in the presence of Amit Shah.

After seven weeks of speculation SM Krishna to join the BJP
news Politics Wednesday, March 22, 2017 - 09:26

After a month-and-a-half of repeated announcements that former External Affairs Minister and ex-Karnataka Chief Minister, SM Krishna will join the BJP officially on Wednesday.

The veteran politician will be inducted into the saffron party at New Delhi in the presence of Amit Shah.

Sources said that BJP’s Karnataka state President, BS Yeddyurappa would not be attending the induction ceremony in the national capital as he will be off to Nanjangud and Gundlupet to campaign for the bye-polls.

Krishna was set to join the BJP on March 15, but postponed the switch-over due his sister’s death. The former Congress leader was already in New Delhi to hold consultations at the time.

Prominent BJP leaders from Karnataka including R Ashok and HN Ananth Kumar will be present at the ceremony on Wednesday.

Sources said that bringing Krishna into the BJP’s fold was crucial as the party members want him to campaign along with Srinivas Prasad in the Nanjangud bypoll.

Nanjangud is seeing a bye-poll because its last MLA Srinivas Prasad, had resigned his post in on December 1, ahead of quitting the Congress and joining the BJP in January. In Gundlupet, the seat fell vacant when veteran Congress leader HS Mahadev Prasad passed away in January.

Srinivas Prasad was the former Public Works Minister in the Siddaramaiah cabinet. Prasad moved out of the Congress after he was dropped from his ministerial post during the July 2016 reshuffle of the cabinet.

Krishna and Prasad had worked closely together during their stint with the Congress, and the latter had also visited Krishna on January 31 to draw the veteran into the BJP’s fold.

“The Nanjangud and Gundlupet bypolls will be held on April 9. If Krishna campaigns along with Srinivas Prasad, there are very high chances that the BJP would win,” a BJP insider said.

Although several BJP leaders believe that Krishna’s entry into the party will make no difference as the senior politician has been absent in mainstream Karnataka politics for years now.

“The BJP will organise a reception for SM Krishna on Thursday at the party’s headquarters in Malleswaram up on his return from New Delhi,” sources said.

The 84-year-old former CM of Karnataka, who was was the External Affairs Minister in the UPA government between 2009 and 2012, served in the grand old party for 46 years before he quit the party.

Krishna had said during a press conference on January 29 that he was “pained and anguished” by the way the Congress had treated him.

 

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