Yeddyurappa talks tough, warns truant ministers

A confident Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa on Monday gave a month’s time to his ministerial colleagues who were bunking office, to improve their attendance.

On the third anniversary of the BJP forming the government on its own in Karnataka, Yeddyurappa sounded tough, listing his government’s achievements, and accusing the Opposition of not allowing him to develop the State.

Participating in “meet the press” programme organised by the Press Club, Bangalore on the third anniversary of the BJP government coming to power, Yeddyurappa sounded more confident than ever, and tough too.

He set a month’s deadline to his ministers who bunk their offices in Vidhana Soudha, to mend their ways.

The chief minister dodged questions on whether he would reduce commercial taxes on petroleum products in order to benefit the common man, stating “I am not thinking on those lines”.

Travelled across the State

The chief minister was proud of having travelled 2,60,000 km in the State and attending about 1,750 public meetings over the three years that he has been in office.

“I have travelled the length and breadth of the State. I have travelled the way I used to  when I was opposition leader. It is perhaps a record,” he proudly stated.

‘Welfare is my mantra’

He patted his own back for ensuring overall development of the State during his three years in office Yeddyurappa said his aim was “Kalyana (welfare) Karnataka”.

The government would focus on rural development, power generation and upgradation of road network in the remaining two years.

He said his detractors within the party had now fallen in line and he hoped that the Opposition would too.

“We are all one now. They have realised their mistakes and we have all decided to work together for the State’s development. Those inside the party have reformed and I hope those who are outside (opposition parties) will also follow  suit,” he said.

‘Cong culture has crept into BJP’

The BJP claims to be a party with a difference. Why are your MLAs repeatedly revolting against their leader?

I think the Congress culture has crept into the BJP . I will try to root it out.

Your colleague M P Renukacharya has called you Basavanna II. 

I am a very common man. I urge one and all not to equate me with a great personality like Basavanna.

You are generously releasing grants to religious institutions.
I am a religious person. I want to protect our culture and the way of life. Religious institutions (including mutts) are doing yeomen service in this regard. Moreover, they are contributing a lot to the field of education and social service. There is nothing wrong in giving them some funds.

The Supreme Court had reprimanded the Speaker on the MLAs’ disqualification cases. What is the punishment for the Speaker?

I do not like to comment on the court order. Still I would say the court has said there were only procedural lapses. No allegation was made against anybody. The Speaker on his part acted like a judge while delivering the decision on a petition. It is not proper to comment on his decision also.

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