Staff Correspondent

There is a need for a comprehensive action plan, says Manjunath Kunnur

Government should provide relief to those who had suffered losses because of floods: Kunnur

‘Basavaraj Bommai indulged in malpractices during the recent elections’

HUBLI: Former MP from Dharwad South (now Haveri) Manjunath Kunnur has urged Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa to take steps to constitute a corporation for taking steps to check loss of life and damage to property due to regular floods in the Benni Halla in Haveri, Dharwad and Gadag districts.

Addressing presspersons here on Thursday, Mr. Kunnur said that there was need for a comprehensive action plan to prevent loss of life and damage to property as the Benni Halla would be in spate during the rainy season.

Mr. Kunnur said that constituting a corporation would help chalk out an action plan for building bridges across the Benni Halla and strengthening the bunds and other works.

Referring to the recent floods in the Benni Halla which forced a group of eight persons to spend a night on a tree to save their lives at Mullahalli village in Kundagol taluk of Dharwad district, Mr. Kunnur said he and former MLC C.S. Shivalli had visited the spot. Such situations came about frequently during the rainy season and only specific steps would help in solving the problem, he added.

He said nearly 600 head of sheep of Lakkappa M. Muttagar of Maharajpet in Hanagal taluk were washed away in the overflowing Benni Halla. Similarly Prakash T. Kore of Bedikihala village and Vittal M. Davani of Benashwa village of Chikkodi taluk lost 370 and 470 head of sheep, respectively. The State Government should either provide them relief or get them another flock of sheep, he urged.

The former MP said he was sending a letter to the Chief Minister in this regard seeking specific steps from the Government.

To a query, Mr. Kunnur said that although the Congress leaders and workers had worked unitedly during the parliamentary elections, the “money power” of the BJP had an upper hand because of which he lost. He refuted reports that some of the Congress leaders worked against him during the elections.

Mr. Kunnur alleged that Water Resources Minister Basavaraj Bommai was directly involved in distributing money as a last-minute effort to woo voters in Shiggaon Assembly segment during the elections. He alleged that Mr. Bommai was, in the recent days, offering monetary benefits to elected representatives of local bodies to get them into party fold with a view to have control over the Assembly segment.

Hubli-Dharwad unit president of the Congress and former Minister Jabbarkhan Honnalli was present.