Bengaluru, Feb 15 (PTI) An outfit formed by senior BJP leader K S Eshwarappa has warned that any move to sideline him in the coming assembly elections would spoil the party’s prospects.

The ‘Rayanna Brigade’, launched a year ago by Eshwarappa at the height of his feud with state party chief B S Yeddyurappa, said it was ready for any conflict if its leader faced any challenge politically.

In a facebook post yesterday, the brigade s state president M Doddaiah said “anybody trying to create any problem for Eshwarappa in Shivamogga (his constituency) should be ready for clash with the Sangolli Rayanna brigade. You will be digging your grave by sidelining the leader of backward communities Eshwarappa, he added.

In the message addressed to party President Amit Shah, Doddaiah claimed that the BJP would not be able to cross 50 seats, let alone achieving the target of 150 seats, if Eshwarappa was ignored.

Eshwarappa had launched the brigade on December 6, 2016 at Nandagad in Belagavi district, naming it after 18th Century warrior and freedom fighter Sangolli Rayanna, who belonged to his ‘Kuruba’ community.

He had said the outfit would work for the upliftment of the Dalits and backwards.

Eshwarappa had later buried the hatchet and said he would work under the leadership of Yeddyurappa.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.