Bhardwaj, who called on Chidambaram as well as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, apprised the Home Minister of the current situation in Karnataka, the resignation of Lokayukta Justice Santosh Hegde and the need to curb illegal mining.
The Governor, who was reluctant to discuss with the media the talks between him and the Home Minister, did admit that the issue of Article 355 figured in the meeting.
According to Article 355, it is the “duty of the Union government to protect every state against external aggression and internal disturbance and to ensure that the government of every state is carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution”.
Bhardwaj, who singled out the “corrupt ministers” in the Yeddyurappa Cabinet on Tuesday, said the Centre possessed powers to intervene in the affairs of the State. However, he repeatedly stressed that except Bellary, from where the ministerial trio of G Janardhana Reddy, Karunakara Reddy and B Sriramulu hail, the law and order situation in Karnataka was “good”.
Keeping up the heat on the Reddy brothers, Bhardwaj said some of the ministers were passing orders in their favour.
Chidambaram, who had earlier spoken to Justice Hegde requesting him to withdraw his resignation, is believed to have sought the Governor’s view on the entire gamut of issues. Bhardwaj is learnt to have said in his response that the Lokayukta should be helped in undertaking his duties.
It is understood that the Home Minister told Bhardwaj, who conveyed his position on the Centre exploring the possibility of looking into certain aspects of administration in the state, that he has already had a word with Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa in this regard.
Praising the CM for following his suggestions on law and order and appointment of VCs to some state universities, Bhardwaj made it a point to broach the issue of four to five ministers who “were bringing a bad name to an otherwise progressive State”.
The Congress charged that “goondaraj” prevailed in the State where “protectors have become predators”.
Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi said Karnataka was akin to dracula heading the bloodbank.
“There is no governance as per law. Guardians have become looters. The Chief Minister is helpless or willfully complacent.
Assembly drama continues
Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa on Wednesday alleged in the Assembly that the Congress was pressing for a CBI probe to protect its leaders who had been into illegal mining, reports DHNS from Bangalore. This remark sparked a furore leading to the Speaker adjourning the House. The Congress and the JD(S) continued their dharna for the third consecutive day.