Yeddyurappa opens his office

Bangalore: Triggering speculation about his next political move, sulking BJP Karnataka strongman B S Yeddyurappa today opened his public contact office but maintained he had no intention to topple his party`s government in the state.

The former Chief Minister`s new venture comes amid the crisis in the ruling BJP which had almost reached a flashpoint a few days ago before Yeddyurappa said he had deferred his decision to quit the party.

The office, "Public Meeting Centre", has come up at Malleswaram which had earlier housed the state unit BJP office before it moved to a new building, with its opening coinciding with the visit of senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley to defuse the crisis.

"People from all political parties and leaders can come and meet me in this office about their grievances. I will take up the matter with concerned ministers, departments and even Chief Minister", Yeddyurappa told reporters.

Maintaining that his new office will not serve as a parallel power centre, Yeddyurappa said: "In fact, I do not want to topple the present government. I would like its term to complete."

Yeddyurappa said he would meet Jaitley and Dharmendra Pradhan, also in-charge of state party affairs, during their visit. He said he would like to convince the leaders about the reason for opening a separate office.

Replying to a question, Yeddyurappa said he would like Sadananda Gowda and other friends to visit the office as it is essentially a `public meeting centre.` In response to another query, Yeddyurappa said he was disappointed with the central leadership for not giving him the state party president`s post.

Interestingly, photos of RSS leaders and L K Advani were missing in Yeddyurappa`s new office.

In another development, Yeddyurappa has decided to vacate the Race Course residence which he had occupied since 2004 when he was in the opposition. He said he would be shifting to his own residence in Dollars Colony on June one.

The Sadananda Gowda government plunged into a crisis after nine ministers and several MLAs loyal to Yeddyurappa submitted their resignations demanding change in leadership which the central leadership rejected.

Yeddyurappa is also facing the heat from the CBI which has launched a probe into alleged illegal mining during his tenure as chief minister and conducted raids on his and family members` residences on Wednesday.