Hindu Nationalists Take Power in Indian IT State

November 12, 2007

Author: Y.P. Rajesh

Source: San Diego Union-Tribune

Wire Service: Reuters


India's opposition Hindu nationalists took power in a southern state on Monday for the first time, hoping it would boost the morale of its supporters ahead of a series of key provincial polls.

The swearing-in of the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) B.S. Yeddyurappa as chief minister of Karnataka, India's IT hub state, ended weeks of uncertainty and a brief spell of federal rule triggered by wrangling for power by BJP's coalition ally.

Yeddyurappa and four ministers took the oath of office at an open-air ceremony in the state capital Bangalore, amid fireworks and cheering by tens of thousands of supporters and senior BJP leaders from around the country.

Karnataka is considered a prize catch for BJP as the party has a negligible presence in other southern states. The party hopes to use Karnataka as a gateway to the south and gain a larger national footprint.

Karnataka becomes the ninth of India's 29 states where the BJP or its allies have come to power.