Staff Reporter

Members express concern over menace of corruption

Members seek discussion on adjournment motionShankaramurthy says scheduled business should not be neglectedChairman says discussion will be held on Friday

BANGALORE: Despite the Government's reluctance on technical grounds, Legislative Council Chairman V.R. Sudarshan on Thursday ruled that a detailed discussion be taken up on Friday on the Lokayukta raids on five police officers in which over Rs. 60 crores of unaccounted wealth was unearthed.

Soon after the House reassembled after the lunch break, V.S. Ugrappa (Congress) urged the Chair to allow an immediate discussion on the adjournment motion signed by him and other members.

Objection

Leader of the House D.H. Shankaramurthy objected, stating that the adjournment motion notice was given just an hour ago and after the House had begun its business for the day. Although the issue deserved the immediate attention of the House, accommodating it at the cost of scheduled business would amount to a breach of the traditions of the House, he argued.

Mr. Shankaramurthy said an adjournment motion could not be moved when the House was conducting scheduled business.

When some members objected to Mr. Shankaramurthy's stand, the Chairman allowed a brief discussion on the issue.

`Mukhyamantri' Chandru and Aravind Limbavali (BJP) and Srikante Gowda (Janata Dal-S) felt that as the issue was serious, it should be taken up on priority. As the House was scheduled to discuss the President's address to the joint session of the legislature, it would be appropriate to discuss the motion later, they added.

M.P. Nadagouda and Basavaraj Bommai (Janata Dal-U) said the House should discuss the issue as people are keenly watching how the elected representatives would respond to the issue. The House should send a clear message on the matter, they said.

Leader of the Opposition H.K. Patil said a discussion on the suggestions made by President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam was no doubt called for. But corruption had created to the implementation of such suggestions. Therefore, discussing an issue such as large-scale corruption unearthed by the Lokayukta would not be improper.

Mr. Shankaramurthy said, "I am not trying to defend anyone. Our Government is just 42 days old. The police officials who are facing allegations must have made money during the tenure of the previous Government. The Government has kept the police officials concerned under suspension. I am not against the discussion, but not at the cost of the rules of the House."

However, Mr. Sudarshan ruled that as the issue is of utmost public importance he would allow a discussion on Friday.

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