Modi effect: Yeddyurappa hints at returning to BJP

Bangalore, Sep 13 (IANS) Former BJP leader in Karnataka B.S. Yeddyurappa Friday hinted at returning to the party following it nominating Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as its prime ministerial candidate.

"Will decide after a discussion with senior leaders of our party (Karnataka Janata Party) on Sep 18 and 19," he told reporters soon after the Bharatiya Janata Party announced Modi's nomination in New Delhi.

Yeddyurappa, BJP's first chief minister in Karnataka, said he welcomed Modi's nomination and he would work for strengthening the NDA (National Democratic Alliance).

Yeddyurappa, who was forced to quit the chief ministership in July 2011 over mining bribery charges, left BJP late last year to head KJP but his party fared poorly in the May 5 Karnataka assembly elections. It won just six seats, including his, in the 225-member assembly.

Since then he has been shifting stands on whether he would return to BJP but has also been saying that he would decide after BJP decides on Modi's role.

A section of Karnataka BJP unit led by former chief D. V. Sadananda Gowda has been lobbying for taking back Yeddyurappa as otherwise the party would not do well in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

The BJP had won 19 of the 28 Lok Sabha seats in the 2009 elections.

Though the KJP won just six seats, the BJP acknowledged that its presence in the electoral fray heavily damaged the party which ended losing power.

The BJP won only 40 seats as against 110 it won in 2008 to form its first government in the state with the help of six independents.

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