BJP's Karnataka shutdown unacceptable, says Chidambaram

BJP's Karnataka shutdown unacceptable, says Chidambaram

Stating that he is "disappointed that the BJP has raised the decibel level and has taken to the streets", the home minister observed: "This is not correct and is totally unacceptable."

The home minister supported Bhardwaj's decision and said that the central government had taken note of the developments in Karnataka as it was not a unique case when a governor has sanctioned a chief minister's prosecution.

"It is not the first time that a governor has given his sanction to prosecute a chief minister or a minister. The law in this respect is clear and well-settled," Chidambaram said in a statement.

The home minister recalled the statement of Karnataka Lok Ayukta Santosh Hegde, who observed that the governor had the jurisdiction to grant sanction for prosecution.

He said the state government was obliged to maintain law and order in Karnataka in the wake of the BJP-sponsored shutdown and "not to stand by when law and order is disrupted by party cadres or there are acts of violence".

The home minister has asked union Home Secretary G.K. Pillai to stay in touch with the chief secretary and the police chief of Karnataka in this regard.

"Surely, the BJP knows the legal position. The BJP also knows that any person aggrieved by the order of the governor can seek legal remedies. Hence, it is my sincere hope that the BJP will advise its state unit to abide by the law, and will advise the government of Karnataka to discharge its constitutional obligation to maintain law and order," the home minister said.

The governnor gave permission Friday night to launch criminal proceedings against Yeddyurappa, as sought by two Bangalore-based advocates, Sirajin Basha and K.N. Balaraj, over revelations that the chief minister had favoured his close kin with prime land in and around Bangalore.