Special Correspondent

Government to request Chaturvedi for poll date

BANGALORE: The Government will send a note on the decision of the Cabinet to hold election to the Legislative Council Chairman's post to Governor T.N. Chaturvedi on Thursday.

Announcing this in the Legislative Council on Wednesday, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Basavaraj S. Horatti said the Government would request the Governor to indicate a date for holding the election.

The Opposition Congress members took exception to the delay in sending the note to the Governor. Pointing out that the Cabinet had, on March 22, decided to hold election to the post, they wanted to know why the Government was taking time to send the note to the Governor. The Congress members, who are in majority in the Council, even threatened that they would defeat the Appropriation Bill if the Government fails to keep its promise of sending the note on the election to the Governor on Thursday.

Earlier, the Council witnessed a heated exchange of words between the members of the ruling coalition and the Opposition over the delay in holding election to the Council Chairman's post. A particular remark made by Congress member V.S. Ugrappa against the style of functioning of the Government attracted the wrath of the ruling combine members. Following their objections, Deputy Chairperson Sachidanand Khot expunged the remarks from the records. But even after the remarks were expunged, several Opposition members, including Leader of the Opposition H.K. Patil, defended those remarks. This gave rise to not only a heated exchange of words between the ruling and the Opposition members but also plunged the House into pandemonium.

Congress member B.K. Chandrashekhar accused the Government of indulging in "Constitutional fraud" by ignoring the message of the Governor to hold the election to the Council Chairman's post at the earliest. The Congress members alleged that the Government was delaying the holding of elections only to prevent the Congress, which had a majority in the House, from winning the post. But the ruling coalition members pointed out that the earlier Congress Governments had left the post vacant for a long time.