Staff Correspondent

Chief Minister cites House session for not announcing decisions

DemandsHold a legislature session in Belgaum Implement Rs. 129-crore water supply and underground drainage project Get Centre's approval for Kalasa-Banduri Nala project Allotment of sites by BUDA

Belgaum: A delegation consisting of Kannada groups and elected representatives from the district, which met Chief Minister H.D. Kumarswamy on March 16 in its bid to get clearance for some long-pending projects, has returned home empty handed. But the delegation is hopeful that the Chief Minister will concede its demands.

Their major demands are implementing the Rs. 129-crore drinking water and underground drainage project, holding a legislature session in Belgaum, getting clearance from the Centre on Kalasa-Banduri Nala project and distribution of housing sites by Belgaum Urban Development Authority (BUDA).

The delegation has stressed the need for a comprehensive policy for the development of border areas of the State.

Technical reasons

A member of the delegation told The Hindu here on Sunday that the Chief Minister cited certain technical reasons for not announcing the Government's response to their demands.

Even before the delegation submitted its memorandum, Mr. Kumaraswamy reportedly told the delegation that he was aware of the issues and problems of the region, including Belgaum district, but could not make announcements since the legislature session was on.

The Chief Minister, who gave a patient hearing to the delegation, said he would visit Belgaum to assess the feasibility of holding a legislature session in the city and take stock of the issues and problems facing the district after the budget session in the first or second week of April.

High-level meeting

A few hours before the delegating met Mr. Kumaraswamy, a high-level meeting was held.

Those who attended it included Chief Secretary B.K. Das; Subash Chandra, Secretary, Housing and Urban Development; Usha Ganesh, Secretary, Kannada and Culture Department; Additional Director-General of Police Subash Bharani; Regional Commissioner for Northern Karnataka V. Umesh; Doreswamy Nayak, Inspector-General of Police, Northern Range; and Deputy Commissioner Shalini Rajneesh.

Deputy Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, Minister for Rural Development and Panchayat Raj C.M. Udasi, Social Welfare Minister Balchandra Jarkiholi from the district, Revenue Minister and Belgaum district incharge Jagdish Shettar attended the meeting.

Belgaum MP Suresh Angadi, Belgaum city MLA Ramesh L. Kudachi, the former Minister Prakash B. Hukkeri, the former Mayor Siddangouda Patil, and the district Kannada Organisations Action Committee President Ashok Chandargi were in the delegation.

The Chief Minister during his visit to Haralkatti in Saudatti taluk on February 27 when 40 houses were gutted, had said that he would be visiting Belgaum to look into the issues and problems of the district after 10 days.