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Karnataka BJP Leader Discusses Possibility of Taking on Leader of Opposition Post

BJP MLA R Ashoka said none of aspirants have filed an application for post of Leader of Opposition (File)

Bengaluru:

Senior BJP MLA and former Deputy Chief Minister R Ashoka on Thursday said he along with four to five other legislators are aspirants for the post of Leader of Opposition in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly, and whoever is elected, will be acceptable to everyone.

The BJP Legislature Party meeting is scheduled for Friday, during which the election of its leader, who will also be the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, is likely to be announced.

“I don’t know, the party has to decide. Whoever the party decides, will get the post. None of us have filed an application, such a culture is not there in our party,” Mr Ashoka said in response to a question on his name along with MLAs — Sunil Kumar, Ashwath Narayan, and Araga Jnanendra — doing the rounds for the post.

He pointed at B Y Vijayendra’s recent appointment as Karnataka BJP President, and said, “You know how that appointment was announced, similarly Leader of Opposition is also an important post, as one has to lead the party booth inside and outside the Assembly. Taking all this into account, a leader will be announced at the legislature party meeting tomorrow in the presence of central observers.”¬†

The BJP central leadership made the announcement on the appointment of Vijayendra, the younger son of veteran leader and former Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa, last week.

Noting that the central leadership opinion gathered the opinion of Legislators and core committee members two months ago, Mr Ashoka said, whoever becomes the leader, no one will have any objection.

Stating that he is aware of the fact that his name too was doing rounds, he said, “There are four to five aspirants including me. Our only objective is for Narendra Modi should become Prime Minister once again, so without any confusion or hindrance the new leader will be elected. I spoke to (V) Sunil Kumar, (C N) Ashwath Narayan yesterday. Whoever becomes the leader, no objection. The party is great, Modi as PM once again — is our slogan.” The BJP, which is the principal opposition party in the state, is yet to appoint its legislature party leader, who will also play the role of the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly.

The previous Assembly session in July was held without the Leader of the Opposition.

In the elections to the 224-member assembly held in May this year, the Congress ousted the BJP from power with a landslide victory. The Congress got 135 seats, the BJP 66 and the JD(S) 19.

The BJP legislature party meeting to elect its new leader is taking place ahead of the winter session of the state legislature in Belagavi, from December 4.

The party had been facing intense criticism from the ruling Congress for its inability to make an appointment to the post, and there was also some disgruntlement within the party over the delay.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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