The Karnataka BJP has 104 legislators, and one Independent; eight short of the Congress-JD(S) combine.
The trick to getting yourself noticed is to start a full-scale attack. Bengaluru’s Shivajinagar MLA Roshan Baig, who lashed out at the triumvirate running the Karnataka Congress — former CM Siddaramaiah, state party in-charge Dinesh Gundurao and the high command’s eyes and ears, K.C. Venugopal — the impolitic comments may be more than a ploy to invite attention. They signal his frustration at being sidelined by Mr Siddaramaiah in favour of the party’s rising Muslim stars. After C.K. Jaffer Sharief’s passing, Mr Baig is unwilling to cede that space. Not to Mr Siddaramaiah’s trusted aide Zameer Ahmed. Not to young Muslim candidate Rizwan Ahmed, who was given the ticket he had his eyes on.
Whether he will take it to its logical conclusion and snap all ties is the question. The lashing out at party bigwigs, not coincidentally, came on the heels of exit polls predicting the Congress’ annihilation at the BJP’s hands in the Lok Sabha polls, when the consolidation of Congress-JD(S) votes should have posed a formidable a challenge to the saffronites. Mr Baig’s comments also coincide with reports of the BJP trying to topple governments in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka. That's what this might all boil down to.
The Karnataka BJP has 104 legislators, and one Independent; eight short of the Congress-JD(S) combine. If the BJP does win Chincholi and Kundgol, and bring in malcontents like Mr Baig and others, and the Ramesh Jarkiholi group of four, the BJP could finally stake claim on the strength of its numerical superiority.
Unless Mr Baig backs down for a Cabinet berth payoff, and yet another Operation Kamala fizzles out.