Special Correspondent

It is all about vote-bank politics: ‘Mukhyamantri’ Chandru

Chief Electoral Officer asks Deputy Commissioner to submit report on incident

Action to be taken based on report

Bangalore: Several senior political leaders, including the Chairman of the Kannada Development Authority, ‘Mukhyamantri’ Chandru, the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council, V.S. Ugrappa, and the former Minister, P.G.R. Sindhia, have condemned the stand of the Bharatiya Janata Party MP, Suresh Angadi, and party MLA, Sanjay Patil, on the sensitive border issue and for allegedly associating with the Maharashtra Ekikaran Samithi (MES) in connection with the hoisting of a saffron flag on the premises of the Belgaum Municipal Corporation on Monday.

Chief Electoral Officer M.N. Vidyashankar told the media that he had asked the Belgaum Deputy Commissioner to submit a report on the incident. Based on the report, action would be taken according to the law against the MP and the MLA.

Mr. Chandru told presspersons here on Tuesday that he would be writing to Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and State BJP president D.V. Sadananda Gowda seeking action against the two elected representatives of the party. “They should know that we have to abide by the Constitution and the rule of law. A dispute of over five decades cannot be settled in this manner. Their stand is embarrassing to the BJP Government in the State and the ruling party,” he said.

He said it was quite obvious that Mr. Angadi, who is the BJP candidate for the Belgaum Lok Sabha seat, is keen on enlisting the support of the MES. “It is all about vote-bank politics played by Mr. Angadi and Mr. Patil,” Mr. Chandru added.

The Congress, on Tuesday, lashed out at the BJP leaders for getting involved in the flag hoisting issue. They alleged that the BJP wanted to keep the border row alive between Karnataka and Maharashtra to gain political mileage in the Lok Sabha elections.

Mr. Ugrappa said the Election Commission should take suo motu action against the BJP MP and the MLA and file a criminal case against them for indulging in unconstitutional and anti-democratic activity. Both the BJP and the MES leaders had violated the model code of conduct he said, and committed a crime under Section 153 of the India Penal Code. It is an insult to the national flag, he alleged.

Border row

Referring to the border row with Maharashtra, Mr. Yeddyurappa had stated that his government would not give an inch of land to the neighbouring State. What action would Mr. Yeddyurappa take against Mr. Angadi and Mr. Patil who had raked up the issue to woo Marathi voters? Mr. Ugrappa asked.