Tumkuru : Karnataka Chief Minister B. S. Yediyurappa on Saturday hinted at continuing as the CM beyond 2023 Assembly elections.
Speaking at a campaign rally in Tumkuru Yediyurppa said he would want to lead the party to victory in 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
He would do so to ensure the Congress in the state be tied to zero seats in the next Lok Sabha polls.
Yediyurappa dared the Congress leader, Siddaramaiah to accept his challenge to defeat him in 2023 Assembly polls.
"Let Siddaramaiah know that I will not allow the Congress party to win single seat now or even in next Assembly elections and will ensure them to sit in the Opposition. And I will lead the party in next Lok Sabha election along with Prime Minister Modi," he said.
He quickly added he was stating this to strengthen the hands of Modi by giving even bigger victory in next Lok Sabha polls in 2024.
Yediyurappa came out in his defence for the first time nearly a week after his leadership was challenged by his own party leaders.
Last week his own party leader from Vijayapura district, Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, had stated that Yediyurappa would be replaced soon as the party high command was fed-up with him.
Besides this, Yatnal had also maintained that the next BJP CM will be from the north-Karnataka region.
In this context Yediyurappa's statement assumes importance.
The 78-year-old veteran leader is known for his iron grip-like command over his community, Lingayats, who form about 15 per cent of voters in the state.
Due to his clout within the community, he is perhaps the first leader in the BJP across the country under the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister, Amit Shah to be appointed as the CM by violating the party's very own rule of compulsory retirement at the age 75 years.
Report from IANS with edits