CM finds supporter in Cong leader, Labour Minister Kharge

Even as the BJP government headed by him came under attack from opposition Congress on various issues, Karnataka Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda today found support for his continuance in post by senior Congress leader and Union Labour Minister M Mallikarjun Kharge.

"I ask Bachchegowda (state labour minister) and other council of ministers to try to save his seat", Kharge said.

Describing Sadananda Gowda as a "man who works seriously with a smiling face", Kharge hoped Gowda was allowed to work as the Chief Minister and "nobody pulled his leg".

Kharge's remarks probably came against the backdrop of efforts by loyalists of former Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa to ensure return of their leader to the Chief Minister post and stepped up attack on the government by opposition over the porn viewing episode.
Inaugurating an ESI hospital here,he said the labour department had sanctioned Rs 4,000 crore to Karnataka after he assumed charge and urged the government to use the funds.

The department, he said, has lined up many programmes for the state including opening of Provident Fund office in Belgaum, upgradation of ESI hospital in Mysore and opening of ESI hospital for beedi workers in Mandya.

"We have already sanctioned 100-bed hospital in Doddaballapura which will cost Rs 100 crore. We have also sanctioned 200-bed hospital in Bommasandra in Bangalore which will cost around Rs 200 crore", Kharge said.

There are 14 lakh labourers covered under ESI scheme in Karnataka and the state stands fourth in the country in terms of number of insured persons under the ESI, he said.

Kharge said the ESI Hospital and nursing college at Rajajinagar in Bangalore will be ready in five to six months and Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda will be invited to unveil it.  "I ask Bachchegowda and others to save his seat till then".

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