Too early to judge Yeddyurappa: Nitin Gadkari

Nagpur:  Amid concerns that the corruption controversy surrounding former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has taken the sheen off the BJP’s anti-corruption crusade against the UPA, party president Nitin Gadkari said “it is too early to pass a judgment” on the leader.
Mr Yeddyurappa is lodged at Bangalore’s Central Jail in connection with a land scam. He was arrested on October 15 for alleged irregularities in denotification of government lands.
He has been accused of misusing his office while he was Chief Minister to benefit his two sons.
But speaking to NDTV in Nagpur, Mr Gadkari said Mr Yeddyurappa cannot be disregarded as an important political leader only because he is fighting a legal case. “Yeddyurappa is fighting a legal case. He is still a very important political leader. We cannot compare his case with 2G scam or CWG scam. No conclusion should be drawn about him till the court passes a final verdict,” Mr Gadkari said, adding, “We will support him, not shield him.”
The timing of Mr Yeddyurappa’s arrest could not be worse for the BJP. The Lingayat leader and the BJP’s tallest Southern figure was arrested exactly a week after senior party leader LK Advani began his Jan Chetna Yatra.
At every rally, Mr Advani vociferously targets the UPA government over various scams. But at one of his stopovers, he even admitted that the BJP could not win the battle of perception without putting its own house in order. He said, “We never take any party weakness lightly and we proved the same in Karnataka. We had cautioned them in advance but when the Lokayukta report came out, he had to resign immediately. We are fully aware of the fact that no party can effectively win the confidence of the people against the present corruption of the Congress party if its own house is bedevilled with similar weaknesses.”
Mr Yeddyurappa defied party orders to resign as Chief Minister in July this year after a report on illegal mining indicted him along with other ministers. He finally agreed to quit after the BJP allowed him to hand-pick several members of the new cabinet, and the man who would replace him as Chief Minister.

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