Shivamogga (Karnataka): Reiterating that he would remain in office till the 2023 Assembly elections, Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Sunday exhorted the ruling BJP cadres to ensure the party's victory in a Lok Sabha and two assembly by-elections due soon.
"Party's state leaders and cadres should strive to ensure our victory in the ensuing by-elections to the Belagavi Lok Sabha seat and Basavakalyan and Maski Assembly seats, to be held soon," said Yediyurappa at the BJP's state core committee meeting here.
By-election to the Belgavi Lok Sabha seat has been necessitated due to the death of sitting member and Minister of State for Railways Suresh Angadi in September 2020 to Covid.
By-election to Basavakalyan in Bidar district has been necessitated due to the death of its sitting Congress member B. Narayana Rao in September 2020 to Covid and to Maski in Raichur district due to the resignation of Congress rebel legislator Pratapagouda Patil in July 2019.
Though then Assembly Speaker K.R. Ramesh Kumar disqualified Patil for the remaining term of the lower house, the Supreme Court in November 2019 allowed him to re-contest. Patil defected to the BJP in November 2019.
Lauding the cadres for the party's victory in 14 of the 17 assembly by-elections on December 5, 2019, and November 3, 2020, Yediyurappa said he would soon tour across the state to prepare the party for winning 140-150 seats in the next Assembly elections, due in April-May 2023.
Of the 17 assembly seats, the BJP wrested 11 from the Congress and 3 from the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) whose rebel legislators resigned and defected to the BJP, leading to the fall of the 14-month JD-S-Congress coalition government after Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy lost the confidence motion in the assembly on July 23, 2019.
Claiming that a majority of candidates affiliated or loyal to the ruling party won in the recent Gram Panchayat (GP) polls, Yediyurappa said presidents and vice-presidents to the local bodies would soon be elected as per the law.
The BJP claimed 'victory' in 60 per cent of the 5,728 GP seats for which elections were held in 2 phases on December 22 and December 27 on non-party basis
"The party should also strive to win majority seats in the upcoming Zilla Parishad (ZP) and taluk panchayat (TP) elections to maintain the momentum in the run-up to the 2023 assembly elections," asserted Yediyurappa.
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