Tejaswini Ananth Kumar, wife of late parliamentarian Ananth Kumar, has been appointed as the vice president of the BJP's Karnataka unit, a week after being denied a party ticket for the national election from her husband's constituency Bengaluru South.
Karnataka BJP chief BS Yeddyurappa, who was surprised at the party's decision to give the national election ticket to a 28-year-old worker, announced her appointment on Twitter today. "I am very delighted to announce that Tejaswini Ananth Kumar has been appointed as the state vice president of BJP Karnataka. Wishing her all the very best," he tweeted.
Mr Yeddyurappa had told NDTV that Tejaswini Ananth Kumar would be the BJP's candidate from Bengaluru South, a constituency represented by her husband five times. But in a surprising move, the party decided to give the ticket to Tejasvi Surya, a lawyer and a member of the BJP's national social media campaign team.
Tejasvi Surya's name was announced by the BJP's central leadership with just hours left in the deadline for filing of nominations. It was expected that the BJP would field Tejaswini from the constituency. She was so certain of being given the ticket that she had even started campaigning. After the decision, however, she did not protest.
"It is shocking to (my workers) and even to me. I have been telling myself it is important to show our maturity, that we are a party with a difference," Tejaswini Ananth Kumar said in an interview to news agency ANI.
"I stand with the party's decision. Let's not start asking questions. If we have to contribute to the country then we have to work for (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi-ji."
She got her reward today-- a senior party position.
Tejaswini Ananth Kumar is an engineer and runs an NGO. She has not been in electoral politics, but she has campaigned for her husband, who died last year.
Tejasvi Surya had paid a visit to Tejaswini soon after his name was announced. He told NDTV that the meeting wasn't awkward. He said, "Ananth sir and Tejaswini ma'am groomed me from my high school days. I have a strong personal bond with her...The beauty of a cadre-based party like the BJP is that once a decision is taken, everybody respects it."
Bengaluru South votes on April 18th. BJP president Amit Shah will take part in a road show in the high profile seat on Tuesday.