Hubballi: BJP state president and MP Nalin Kumar Kateel held a 'secret' meeting with party leaders from the North Karnataka region in Hubballi on Tuesday regarding the Belagavi Lok Sabha by-elections.
The by-election in Belagavi has been necessitated after the death of sitting MP Suresh Angadi, who was a union minister. He recently succumbed to Covid-19.
One of the items discussed during the meeting was the possible candidate for the by-polls. Various issues related to the party, including Cabinet expansion, were also discussed during the meeting.
The four-hour-long meeting was reportedly attended by Ramesh Jarakiholi, Balachandra Jarakiholi, Large-Scale Industries Minister Jagadish Shettar, Hukkeri MLA Umesh Katti, his brother Ramesh Katti, Union Minister Prahlad Joshi, and others. All the MLAs of the region were also present.
What is interesting about the meeting is that none of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa's loyalists (other than the Katti brothers) were present, according to a report by TNM. Although, the Katti brothers have had a falling out with BSY over the past year after they were sidelined.
This has led to speculation that not everything is well within the saffron party's Karnataka unit.
According to sources, the meeting was called in accordance with the advice of RSS leaders.
Speaking to the media after the meeting, Jagadish Shettar, who according to sources is hoping that his son (Pratap Shettar) will get the ticket to contest in the bye-elections, said that the issue did not come up. He added that the political issues in Belagavi and Maski were discussed and Pratapgouda Patil was promised that he would get the ticket.
"We also discussed the issues of disgruntled party leaders and workers. They have been instructed to cooperate with the party and out its reputation before everything else. My son’s nomination was not discussed,” he said.
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