Fresh rider: JD(S) wants govt to probe into BBMP loans

Fresh rider: JD(S) wants govt to probe into BBMP loans

Fresh rider: JD(S) wants govt to probe into BBMP loans

The JD(S) on Thursday set another condition for the Congress to facilitate an alliance with it in the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike Council.

A day after JD(S) president H D Deve Gowda told the Congress to drop its agenda of restructuring the BBMP, the party conveyed to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Thursday that the government should order a probe into the large quantum of loans procured by the BBMP during the BJP’s tenure.

Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru, JD(S) MLA Y S V Datta said Gowda had directed him to convey to Siddaramaiah that loans to the tune of Rs 9,600 crore had been availed by BBMP in the past few years. An inquiry was necessary to probe the utilisation of the amount by the civic body, Datta said.

He said he had visited the official residence of Siddaramaiah on Thursday morning regarding matters related to his constituency and had utilised the occasion to convey Gowda’s views.

AICC secretary in-charge of Karnataka A Chella Kumar was present at the meeting, he said. Replying to queries, Datta refused to accept that these were conditions set by the JD(S). “We are only concerned with the comprehensive development of Bengaluru,” he said.

Gowda also sought that the alliance should not take any decision that would embarrass the two parties, Datta said.

HDK stays his ground

There was no shift in H D Kumaraswamy’s stand even on Thursday. He maintained that he had no intention of meeting the Congress leaders. “Though my father has opined that the Congress leaders should talk to me, I am not keen on meeting them. Let them give an open statement that they will drop the restructuring bill, after which the JD(S) will extend its support,” he told Deccan Herald.

He said he didn’t want to be associated with a party which was also known for its corruption in the City. “The government has ordered an inquiry into asphalting works from the year 2005 to 2012. Let it extend the investigations till March 2015. If they are not ready to do that, why should I become party to a corrupt setup?” he said.

The father-son duo is also not keen to share power in the council with the Congress. They are wary of the second-rung leaders in the party gaining supremacy, if the JD(S) decides to accept the deputy mayor’s post.

The three JD(S) MLAs - Zameer Ahmed Khan, Akhanda Srinivas Murthy and K Gopalaiah - are the ones who have been impressing upon the duo for the deputy mayor’s post.
Gowda, who is keen only on the standing committee posts, is wary of insisting on the deputy mayor’s post, for, unlike the standing committee posts, the deputy mayor’s post will not give the JD(S) much bargaining power.

On shaky wicket?

Though it is rumoured that Gopalaiah’s wife and corporator-elect Hemalatha S P is being considered for the deputy mayor’s post, party sources said the father-son duo did not want Gopalaiah, who is trying to emerge as a Vokkaliga leader in his Mahalakshmi Layout constituency, to gain the upper hand.

While one option is to go by Khan’s candidate, the party might finally go with a dummy candidate if the post is offered by the Congress. This is said to have not gone down well with Gopalaiah who is in Kochi with his the party corporators-elect.

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