CM draws curtains on grand Soudha fete; caps cost at Rs 10 cr

Siddaramaiah suggests event be made a one-day affair

CM draws curtains on grand Soudha fete; caps cost at Rs 10 cr
Faced with severe criticism from various quarters on the Legislature Secretariat's lavish plan to celebrate the diamond jubilee of the Vidhana Soudha, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Tuesday suggested to the Secretariat to cap the event at Rs 10 crore against the earlier Rs 26.87 crore.

Legislative Assembly Speaker K B Koliwad and Legislative Council Chairman D H Shankaramurthy, who met Siddaramaiah at his home office, Krishna, agreed to scale down the celebrations.

(Read more: Rs 3.75 cr for lunch, dinner at Soudha bash)

According to sources, Siddaramaiah was bent on cutting down the scale of the event and asked the presiding officers to wrap up the event within Rs 10 crore. The Legislature Secretariat's plan to spend Rs 26.87 crore had become a talking point nationally. The chief minister also asked the presiding officers to make it a one-day affair and not two days as was planned.

Every legislator was to get gold biscuits worth Rs 55,000 each whereas employees were to get silver plates worth Rs 6,000 each as gifts, according to the original plan.

Shankaramurthy later told this paper that in 2007, when the state celebrated 60 years of independence, Rs 2.40 crore was spent on giving mementoes. “This time, we estimated the cost of mementoes to go up to Rs 3 crore, but nothing was finalised on the choice of mementoes. I don’t know how this gold and silver thing crept in,” Shankaramurthy said.

“The chief minister asked why this had become controversial. So I said, let’s drop the plan to give mementoes. The CM wanted us to look at other areas where cost can be cut. Hence, we have assured him that we will look into it,” he added.

Koliwad and Shankaramurthy meeting the chief minister at his home office had raised eyebrows as their activities are governed by protocol. However, Shankarmurthy said there was no protocol breach. “According to the protocol, we cannot visit his (CM) office in Vidhana Soudha. We can go to his home office and we have done so in the past as well,” he said.

Meanwhile, Siddaramaiah, who reached the Congress party office after the meeting, lost his cool when reporters wanted to speak with him. “I will not talk,” he thundered.
DH Newsletter Privacy Policy Get top news in your inbox daily
Comments (+)