BJP accuses Cong of holding rebels captive in Goa

All legislators have spoken to the CM on the phone that they still support him

 But Reddy’s Goa campaign came with a touch of the theatrical as sparks flew between the BJP and local Congress leaders over access to some of the rebels.

Emerging from the Taj Exotica, Benaulim, South Goa where a group of 14 rebels led by Excise Minister Renukacharya are “relaxing” Reddy told journalists that the crisis would soon blow over: “All our MLAs have spoken to the CM on the phone to say they still support him.”

Goa BJP leader Manohar Parrikar said late night outside the hotel that a final meeting with the dissidents has been scheduled for 8 am on Friday to finalise the patch-up. “We met with the BJP MLAs and have almost sorted out the misunderstandings,” he said.

But the BJP at the same time said it had been “denied access” to at least six or seven MLAs by Goa Home Minister Ravi Naik who was camped out in one of the rooms with some dissidents. “Even our minister Reddy was barred from talking to some MLAs. They are our own MLAs, how can Ravi and the Goa police deny us access?” BJP MP Sripad Naik told Deccan Herald from the hotel. He said the SP South Goa Alan D’Sa had also acted in a high-handed manner and tired to stop the Karnataka minister from meeting with MLAs.

Ravi Naik on the other hand claimed he was merely playing good host to “some friends” who had come to enjoy and relax in Goa.

“Janardhana Reddy spoke to some MLAs, so did Prabhakar Khore and Manohar Parrikar. I didn’t stop anyone from speaking to anyone,” the Congress leader said.

Pursued by a heavy posse of policemen from Karnataka, Reddy zoomed in here not soon after a group of 14 rebel MLAs, nine of them from the BJP and five independents flew into Goa from Mumbai and made a heavily guarded transit from Dabolim airport to the hotel watched over by three Goa Congress ministers.

As news got back to BJP cadres that the rebel flock was being guarded by Congress ministers, Parrikar marched in with some 60 odd supporters and stormed into the Taj Exotica in the evening. By 9.30 p.m. the BJP had managed to pull together a crowd of almost 500 supporters from Goa and Karnataka to stand vigil outside the Taj.

A senior Congress leader who was watching events play out from the sidelines in the hotel said he heard figures of Rs 25 crore being bandied about soon after Reddy’s arrival.
Earlier,   Rebel BJP members flew into Goa on Thursday evening from Mumbai and went into a huddle at the hotel.

The group made a heavily guarded transit from Dabolim airport to the hotel watched over by three senior Goa Congress Ministers Ravi Naik, Alex Sequeira and Churchill Alemao, apart from a few party functionaries. As one act of the Karnataka political crisis played out in Goa, there were rumours flying fast and thick here later in the night that Tourism Minister Janardhana Reddy, pursued by a convoy of Karnataka police, had also arrived to try and establish contact with the hard-nosed rebels.

 Day’s developments

- CM forwards resignation of Anand Asnotikar, Balachandra Jarkiholi to Governor
- CM visits Rajarajeshwari Temple in Kochi in Kerala
- Raju Gowda & S K Bellubbi identified with rebels return to Bangalore
- Shivanagouda Naik, Asnotikar say, ‘Yeddyurappa should go’
- BJP MLAs leave for resort hold BJPLP
- Cong holds CLP in a resort
- Rebels camp shift location to Goa
- BJP alleges party leaders not allowed to meet rebels in Goa
- Renukacharya tells media he has no plans to bring down the govt

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