Congress stops Guttedar from quitting

Congress stops Guttedar from quitting

Speaking to reporters in the presence of Afzalpur MLA Malikayya Guttedar, Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Siddaramaiah declared that the legislator had decided against resigning.

Guttedar, who had yesterday announced he would resign his assembly membership and from the party citing his 'marginalisation', said he had changed his mind after Siddaramaiah assured him that his grievances would be redressed. However, he said if the party did not act on its assurance, he would be free to decide his course of action.

Guttedar, a five-time MLA and a former minister, has been accusing some party leaders of Gulbarga, including Union Minister for Labour M Mallikarjun Kharge and Bidar Lok Sabha MP, N Dharam Singh, of marginalising him.

Siddaramaiah said Guttedar had told him the difficulties he faced and he had assured him that he would take up the issue with the party high command soon. Speculation was rife that Guttedar was among a few MLAs, ruling BJP was trying to approach as part of its "Operation Lotus" aimed at eroding the opposition strength in the assembly by making MLAs give up their seats.

Three Congress MLAs and one from JD(S) have quit their assembly membership in recent days after the state faced political turmoil with the withdrawal of support of 16 MLAs to BJP's first ever government in the south.

Siddaramaiah said the Congress Legislature Party, which met today, discussed the prevailing political situation and a team of party leaders led by him and comprising KPCC President R V Deshpande and Working President D K Shivakumar would brief AICC President Sonia Gandhi about the Karnataka affairs.

He accused Chief Minister B S Yeddyurpapa of being responsible for the current "chaotic" political situation, saying the opposition parties could not be held responsible. Under the rule of Yeddyurappa, Karnataka earned the image of being "the most corrupt state" in the country, he charged.

"If Yeddyurappa is honest, let him seek a CBI probe into amassing of wealth by him", he said.

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