Dissident MLC Vishwanath flays Lingayat seers for backing Yediyurappa

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Mysuru, Jul 21 (PTI) Dissident BJP MLC A H Vishwanath on Wednesday asked the Lingayat seers whether they were 'backing corruption' by rallying behind Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa amid speculation around his replacement.

Vishwanath, who has been vocal against Yediyurappa, criticised them, claiming that they are setting a 'wrong precedent' by backing the Chief Minister and his government 'instead of standing with the people'.

'Why is the BJP High Command asking Yediyurappa to move out? The main reason is corruption.When this being the case, what message you seers are sending out? You are giving a message in favour of corruption,' Vishwanath said in a press conference.

Instead of guiding people, the seers were 'crossing their limits', he alleged.

'These pontiffs should be part of the society and not the government.No pontiff should ever stand in favour of a person or a political party.And it is also not proper to let the seers hit the road to bat in favour of a person,' Vishwanath, who had resigned from the assembly as JD(S) MLA in 2019 and joined the ruling BJP, said.

Vishwanath, the former JD(S) MLA from Hunsur and ex-JDS state president, was among the 17 Congress and the JD (S) MLAs who were disqualified from the Karnataka assembly for rebelling against their parties.

Their rebellion had brought down the Congress-JDS coalition government. He later joined the BJP and unsuccessfully contested the assembly election in December 2019.

The BJP made him an MLC.

Vishwanath was aspiring to become a Minister but due to a 'legal hurdle' he could not get a Cabinet berth.

Support continued to pour in for Yediyurappa from Mutts, as several pontiffs made a beeline to his official residence for the second consecutive day on Wednesday and threw their weight behind him, amid speculation that his exit was on the cards. PTI GMS RS BN BALA BN BALA

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