Opposition demands central rule in Karnataka

Opposition demands central rule in Karnataka

Upping the ante following the porn scandal, opposition Congress and JDS today demanded imposition of President's rule in the state.

 Opposition members display placards against the ruling BJP members in protest agains the ‘porn episode,’ in the Council on Wednesday. DH Photo "We have met Governor H R Bhardwaj and requested him to recommend to the Central government to dissolve the Assembly and dismiss the state government under Article 356 for failing to govern as per Constitutional laws," Opposition Leader in the Assembly Siddaramaiah told reporters.

He alleged the state government has failed in all sectors including implementation of various public schemes and maintaining decorum of the House -- the latest incident being the one in which three ministers were caught on camera watching sleazy clippings on cellphone during Assembly proceedings.

The opposition offensive comes a day after an embarrassed BJP central leadership gave marching orders to the three ministers in the wake of all round criticism.

Facing the heat, Karnataka Chief Minister D V Sadanada Gowda today hit back, accusing the Congress of engaging in petty politics.

"We need not learn lessons of morality from Congress leaders. The whole world knows about the scams the Congress leaders faced. I myself can cite at least 25 such instances that involved Congress leaders", Gowda told reporters.

Gowda said the three ministers had quit voluntarily and had even demanded a probe.
He said a House Committee of the assembly has been set up to enquire into it and Congress should wait for its report.

Congress has ruled the nation for about 60 years and several scams have "surfaced against its leaders", he said.

The Chief Minister's attack came even as Congress members staged a dharna in front of the Vidhana Soudha, the state secretariat, demanding BJP government's resignation and disqualification of three former ministers from assembly membership.

Congress legislators headed by Siddaramaiah and KPCC chief G Parameshwara staged the dharna, shouting slogans against the BJP government.

Addressing the legislators, Parameshwara and Siddaramaiah said the BJP government has been facing one scandal after another ever since it came to power four years ago.

They said there was no need for any house committee to probe the matter and Speaker K G Bopaiah should disqualify them from the assembly membership.

Embarrassed by the episode involving Laxman Savadi, C C Patil and Krishna Palemar, the BJP had yesterday asked them to step down as ministers after a public and Opposition outcry.

"We are ready to face election," Siddaramaiah said after after meeting the Governor. Bhardwaj has assured him that necessary steps would be taken, he said.

Launching a tirade against the Speaker, the Opposition leader accused him of acting in a partisan way to save the BJP government by disqualifying 16 MLAs ahead of the no-confidence motion in 2010 which had ensured survival of the Yeddyurappa government.

Former minister and JDS leader N C Nanaiah also claimed that Bopaiah had disqualified the MLAs for extraneous reasons, especially to save the government.

"The BJP government has forfeited the legal and moral authority to govern the state," he said.