Special Correspondent

It has made its stand clear: Shankaramurthy

  • No difference of opinion between BJP and JD(S): Minister
  • `We always respect Mr. Deve Gowda as a senior leader'

    SHIMOGA: Minister for Higher Education D.H. Shankaramurthy said on Tuesday that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was not averse to internal reservation for Other Backward Classes as it had made its stand on the issue clear.

    Addressing presspersons here, he said when the question of internal reservation being extended to the Madigara Dandur community was raised in the Legislative Council, he as the Leader of Opposition had spoken in support of it making his party's stand clear.

    Referring to the remarks by president of the Janata Dal (S) H.D. Deve Gowda that it was the Bharatiya Janata Party which opposed internal reservation for Other Backward Classes, he said it was not true. He clarified that there was no difference of opinion between the partners of the coalition Government on the issue.

    He hoped that the issue was likely to figure at the meeting of the coordination committee of the coalition Government of which he was a member.

    When his attention was drawn to Mr. Deve Gowda's warning against the BJP that the coalition arrangement with it would end the moment it chose to cross the "Lakshman Rekha", Mr. Shankaramurthy said that his remarks should be taken in a right spirit. "It is very nice of Mr. Deve Gowda as an elderly person for having warned against the crossing of the Lakshman Rekha. He had never said that the BJP had crossed the Lakshman Rekha," he said.

    He replied in the negative when asked whether his party would discus with Mr. Deve Gowda on this issue.

    He said that the question did not arise at all as the coalition Government was formed after discussing with H.D. Kumaraswamy without bringing Mr. Deve Gowda into picture at all. "In fact, Mr. Deve Gowda could not reconcile himself with the formation of the coalition Government by his party with the BJP. It is only after five months of the formation of the Government that he started reconciling himself. We always respect Mr. Deve Gowda as a senior leader," he said.

    Asked whether transfer of power to the Bharatiya Janata Party by the Janata Dal (Secular) would be a smooth affair, Mr. Shankaramurthy said that there was no need for any apprehension over it when the Chief Minister himself had promised that he would hand it over when his term ended.