‘Kingdoms lose way when leaders are guided by sycophants’: CT Ravi’s post stirs up speculation in Karnataka

Ravi, while drawing references from the fall of the Vijayanagar empire in the 16th century, said powerful kingdoms often lose their way when rulers are guided by sycophants.

At a time when voices of dissent have come up against Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa from within his own party, a social media post by BJP national general secretary CT Ravi has stirred up speculations in the southern state.

Ravi, who is also a senior leader in Karnataka, while drawing references from the fall of the Vijayanagar empire in the 16th century, said powerful kingdoms often lose their way when rulers are guided by sycophants.

“Without a leader to provide direction, the Vijayanagar army was routed. If somebody other than sycophants had been leading the army, history would have been different. After the death of Rama Raya, all those in positions of power took away everything they got to secure the lives of their family members. The plunderers looted everything,” he wrote.

Further, Ravi went on to ask, “How much have we learnt from history? If the sycophants are in the fort at the cost of ordinary people, how long will the empire last? Can the story of the destruction of a great empire not teach us a lesson?”

The message posted on June 1 came amid several leaders of the BJP, including a minister in the state cabinet, calling out the chief minister over the state government’s decision of granting 3,667 acres of land to JSW Steel. They had opposed the decision of selling land worth Rs 1 crore per acre at Rs 1.25 lakh per acre to the private company following which the move was rolled back.

C P Yogeshwara, the minister for tourism in Karnataka, had also posted a cryptic message about the state of affairs in Karnataka. “I would not like it if my son was wielding my authority,” he had said in an oblique reference to the alleged interference of Yediyurappa’s son Vijayendra in the administration.

He added, “This government does not seem like a pure BJP government. It seems like a three-party government. I want to discuss the problems that are being faced by legislators behind the four walls of the party and not publicly. I have been trying to express my genuine concerns to the party leadership.”

Chief Minister Yediyurappa has himself admitted last week that efforts to dislodge him had been rebuffed by the BJP central leadership. “Look, the issue before me is Covid. Just because someone has gone somewhere and returned does not mean anything,” Yediyurappa had said on May 27 when asked about moves by Yogeshwara and others to dislodge him.

While speculations of the BJP bringing about a possible change of leadership in Karnataka has been in the air for over a year, the saffron party’s leadership in Karnataka has denied any such happening.

Yediyurappa, on his part, has reportedly rallied the support of seers of the dominant Lingayayat community in order to demonstrate his strong foothold in the state. The chief minister’s son Vijayendra also paid a visit to New Delhi this week to put a lid on the political uncertainty in Karnataka.

There is now speculation that the BJP may be looking at revamping the state cabinet instead of embarking on the risky proposition of dislodging Yediyurappa.

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