After a much-delayed cabinet expansion, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa is facing yet another crisis. He has rejigged some portfolios and most of the newly inducted ministers and some seniors are unhappy with it.
Yediyurappa has cut two high-profile ministers to size by changing the portfolio of JC Madhuswamy and taking away Medical Education from Dr. K Sudhakar.
According to insiders, a shocked Madhuswamy has threatened to resign, terming it as an insult to him.
The powerful law and parliamentary affairs portfolio has now been given to Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai and Madhuswamy has got the unimportant Medical Education, Kannada and Culture as his new portfolios.
Madhuswamy, originally a Janata Dal man, is a new entrant to the BJP. Many of his colleagues feel that he is abrasive and unhelpful. In the last 18 months, he had rubbed many on the wrong side and the demotion is a punishment for not following CM’s instructions, they claim.
According to some people in the government, he had tried to block the land deals of a powerful mutt in the state and he is now being made to pay for that.
Dr. K Sudhakar, a Congress turncoat, has lost the Medical Education portfolio. He will now have only Health and Family Welfare with him.
BSY has promoted his close confidant Bommai by giving him the additional charge of Law and Parliamentary Affairs.
Among the newly inducted seven ministers, five are openly expressing their dissatisfaction over the portfolios allocated to them.
Lingayat leader and sugar baron Murugesh Nirani has got the lightweight Mines and Minerals. He was expecting the lucrative Energy.
Senior BJP MLA from Bengaluru, Aravind Limbavali, has got the Forest portfolio. He was eyeing the powerful Bengaluru Development Authority or at least the Urban Development.
Another Congress turncoat MTB Nagaraj has got the Excise and he left the CM’s house seething with anger, calling it a betrayal.
Umesh Katthi, an eight-time MLA, has got the unimportant Food and Civil Supplies and he is reportedly unhappy with it.
CM BSY is personally meeting the unhappy ministers trying to pacify them. His close aides are hopeful that the crisis will blow over in a day or two as these ministers have no other options.
BSY had inducted seven new ministers a week ago, ending month-long speculations.