BSY seeks explanation on mining report leak

Yeddyurappa asks former Lokayukta Santosh Hegde to come clean

He also asked Hegde to come clean on the mystery behind the tapping of the Lokayukta’s phones.

“By including my name in the report on illegal mining, you (the Lokayukta) have made me hang my head in shame,” Yeddyurappa said. He said there was a deep-rooted conspiracy against him and the BJP government.

The former chief minister was addressing a press conference in the city on Wednesday. “How was the report, based on the probe by the special team led by U V Singh, leaked. Bring out the truth at least now,” he told Hegde.

“The government had directed you to submit a report on illegal mining in the State as also the illegal export of ore. You had issued a notice to former chief minister Dharam Singh and IPS officer Jija Harisingh and sought their explanation on their involvement in illegal mining. Why did you not give me a notice?,” he asked the former Lokayukta.

Rayareddy flayed

Yeddyurappa launched a scathing attack on former minister and Congress leader Basavaraj Rayareddy, who had on Tuesday alleged that the former chief minister was misusing the Veerashaiva and Lingayat communities by providing grants to the mutts and thus appeasing the seers.

He threatened to hold a dharna against Rayareddy along with the pontiffs of these mutts. Yeddyurappa appealed to the members of the community to boycott the Congress party.

Addressing Rayareddy in the singular, the former chief minister said he had not granted funds only to Veerashaiva mutts. “I have given money to the mutts of all communities.”

He said more illegal mining had taken place during S M Krishna’s tenure as chief minister.

“Yet KPCC chief G Parameshwara is crossing his limits while making statements,” he said. He told the Congress that the people would teach the party a lesson.

He threw a challenge to those hatching a conspiracy against the government and said he would teach them a lesson. Yeddyurappa said he will be in politics for another two decades.

Reacting to Yeddyurappa’s statements, Rayareddy said the former chief minister had become disillusioned after being in jail for some time. “His statements are childish in nature. I am not a small child. I have been in politics for three decades,” he said.

Campaigning hots up

Canvassing for the Bellary Rural bypoll has reached a critical point with leaders of the political parties making allegations and counter allegations against each other.

Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda, his predecessor B S Yeddyurappa, State BJP President K S Eshwarappa and a number of ministers are camping in Bellary to ensure the victory of the BJP candidate.

On the other hand, KPCC chief G Parameshwara, Congress leader Madhusudhan Mistry, Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, Siddaramaiah, his counterpart in the Council, Motamma, are there to campaign for their candidate. Supporters of former minister Sriramulu have also involved themselves in hectic campaigning.

JD(S) State President H D Kumaraswamy said his party had not fielded a candidate, as it thought that doing so would be a wasteful exercise. But the party would support a “strong Independent candidate,” he said. But no party leader would openly campaign for the Independent nominee.

When asked whether it was not wrong to support Sriramulu, who has been named in the mining report, Kumaraswamy said the allegation against him had not been proven.

‘Bellary success not due to Reddys’

Yeddyurappa said the BJP owes its growth in Bellary to party leader Sushma Swaraj, who had contested from here in the 1999 Lok Sabha polls, and not the Reddy brothers and Sriramulu. “They are claiming to be responsible for the growth of the party here, but they are only symbolic. Their goondaism will not sustain here any longer. They will be taught a lesson after the bypoll,” he said. He called upon the Reddy brothers and Sriramulu to mend their ways at least now. “Sriramulu, who resigned as MLA miffed at being denied a ministerial berth, is trying to kick the ladder which helped him attain high position,” he said.

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