Legislators raise banner of revolt

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Raising a banner of revolt against leaders of the ruling party, Kundapura legislator Haladi Sreenivasa Shetty resigned from the Legislative Assembly on Friday.

Mr. Shetty, who turned emotional and led protests by legislators of the coastal belt after he learnt that he was dropped from the list of ministerial candidates at the last minute, however, could not hand over his resignation letter to Speaker K.G. Bopaiah as the latter was away on a tour.

“I am firm in my decision to resign my seat. Due to technical reasons, the Assembly secretary did not accept my resignation.

Once the Speaker returns to Bengaluru, I will submit the resignation again. I have not mentioned any reason for quitting. I will take a decision on resigning from the party after consulting my supporters.

Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar requested me not to take hasty decision, but my conscience will not permit to me to continue as a legislator,” he told Deccan Chronicle.

Mr Shetty said he would not join issue with state unit chief K.S. Eshwarappa’s statement that he was not chosen to join the cabinet.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar said he has requested Mr Shetty not to resign.
“I know Mr. Shetty as a legislator for 13 years.

He is a model legislator for all of us. I asked him to meet me and promised to resolve the issue”, Mr Shettar told media persons.

In a related development, eight unsuccessful aspirants met at the residence of former minister G Karunakar Reddy and decided to take their battle to the logical end.

Kundapur rallies behind Shetty

Kundapur residents voiced their solidarity for their MLA, Haladi Srinivas Shetty who was dropped from the new cabinet at the last minute, by observing a bandh on Friday.

“Till Thursday morning, Mr Shetty’s name was in the list. But half an hour before the swearing in, we were told that he had been dropped,” Kundapur Assembly constituency committee secretary Rajesh said.

A protest was organized at Shastri Circle which was attended by more than 3,000 people. Shetty supporters alleged that RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat was responsible for Shetty’s name being dropped from the list and burnt his effigy.

nSenior RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat clarified that he had no role in deletion of Srinivas Shetty’s name from the list of ministers’. “When I heard that his name was dropped, I contacted BJP leaders who told me that Haladi Srinivas Shetty was never chosen for induction into the cabinet.

They also told me that the list of ministers was finalized on Wednesday evening by senior central leaders in New Delhi,” Mr Bhat said. He said the central leaders reportedly told state leaders not to yield to pressure and make changes in the list drawn up in Delhi. So, there was no question of any change in the list, he added.

MLA upset over losing berths

Mudigere BJP MLA M.P. Kumaraswamy, who staged a dharna before the statue of B.R. Ambedkar at Vidhana Soudha on Thursday to protest against his non-inclusion in the state cabinet, on Friday softened his stance and said he would not go to the extent of resigning from the legislative Assembly as Haladi Srinivas Shetty had done.

* Followers of Koppal MLA Karadi Sanganna who made a futile bid to secure a cabinet berth, feel that his proximity to former CM B.S. Yeddyurappa may have worked against him as BSY loyalists Kalakappa Bandi from Gadag district and MLC B.J. Puttaswamy made it. Mr Sanganna, a four-time MLA from Koppal seat, had switched from JD(S) to BJP during Yeddyurappa’s tenure as Chief Minister.

* The BJP MLAs, who failed to get berths in the Jagadish Shettar government, have formed a new power centre under former revenue minister G. Karunakar Reddy who has emerged from political hibernation after the arrest of his brother and mine baron, Janardhan Reddy in the illegal mining scam.

Legislators Suresh Gowda and Belur Gopalkrishna, who were seen all the time at the residence of BSY, have shifted their activity to the residence of Karunakar Reddy.

Eshwarappa rules out conspiracy

Deputy chief minister and state BJP president K.S. Eshwarappa on Friday played down the revolt by MLAs of the coastal belt, saying there was no conspiracy behind omission of names of legislators chosen for induction into the cabinet.

Speaking to media persons after offering pooja to Goddess Chamundeshwari, he said “neither the state nor central leaders assured anyone any position. The claim by few legislators including Kundapur legislator Haladi Srinivas Shetty were out of sheer disappointment. The party cannot allot a berth to every MLA.

The legislators have to wait for their chance and keep working for the development of Karnataka and the party. I will speak to Mr. Srinivas Shetty and other legislators to put a full stop to this problem,” he added.

Mr. Eshwarappa, who came to the temple with ministers S.A. Ramdas and S.Suresh Kumar, said he would soon quit as president of the state unit of BJP. He hinted that D.V. Sadananda Gowda would be next state unit chief.

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