Special Correspondent

Former Chief Minister hits out at Yeddyurappa for holding out ‘hollow promises’ to people

‘Decisions taken at Gulbarga Cabinet meet old ones’

Ready to face defamation suit

Bangalore: The former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy on Friday hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party Government and in particular Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa for holding out hollow promises to the people only with an eye on the byelections to eight Assembly constituencies.

The State Government has ordered Lokayukta inquiries into five development projects and the appointment of engineers and linemen for the Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Limited and the Public Works Department. Three of these inquiries pertain to the period when Mr. Kumaraswamy was heading the Janata Dal (Secular)-BJP coalition Government.

Addressing presspersons, Mr. Kumaraswamy said the Lokayukta inquiries would turn out to be meaningless exercise unless the Government specified proper terms of reference. Further, the Government should include two more subjects — the scandal in the Bhagyalakshmi scheme and the large-scale purchase of bicycles for high school students from BPL families.

The former Chief Minister said that although he headed the coalition Government when the decisions on the Bhagyalakshmi and the bicycle schemes were taken, he had certain limitations in turning down the decisions of Mr. Yeddyurappa and the BJP.

“Without any transparency and tenders, the Bhagyalakshmi scheme was offered on a platter to an insurance company despite the objections raised by then Principal Secretary to Government, Department of Women and Child Welfare. Similar was the case in the purchase of bicycles,” he alleged.

On the Government’s decision to file a defamation suit against him after he charged the Chief Minister with receiving a bribery of Rs. 50 crore for approving a joint venture development of the Ejipura land in Bangalore to construct housing quarters for the economically weaker sections, Mr. Kumaraswamy said: “All that I said was that there could be a deal in approving the joint venture in favour of Maverick Holdings Limited. When I was Chief Minister, a similar move was made by the same company. I said that it is for Mr. Yeddyurappa to give the details.” Mr. Kumaraswamy, however, defended his statement and maintained that he was ready to face the challenge with reference to the defamation suit.