Yeddyurappa evasive on Lokayukta issue

Staff Correspondent

Officials asked to prepare notes on Lokayukta report

‘Not a single permission given for mining’

Belgaum: Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa seems to be shying away from demonstrating political will to bring legislators under the purview of Karnataka Lokyukta even while supporting the institution.

At a press conference here on Saturday, he chose not to reply when asked if his Government had the political will to make legislators accountable for their alleged corrupt practices.

When persisted, he said: “I said I will come back but not now, after sometime.”

Significantly, a Minister soon after the press conference told The Hindu that the question should open the doors for a debate and discussion. There have been proposals before the Government since the time of S.M. Krishna Government to bring legislators under the purview of Lokayukta.

The Chief Minister said he spoke to Chief Secretary, Additional Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary of Home Department and asked them to study the report on corruption cases submitted by Lokayukta to the Government without losing time. He advised them to submit a report with suggestions and measures to strengthen the hands of Lokayukta to bring down corruption in the State. He said ever since the BJP formed the Government, no permission was granted to carry out mining in any part of the State; not even a single licence was renewed till date.

Asked whether the existing contractors had expanded mining areas, he said so far not even a single file had come before the Government.

Taking a dig at the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular), he said the Congress was synonymous with corruption and should look at its own house.

All-party delegation

Mr. Yeddyurappa said he would soon lead an all-party delegation to New Delhi to pressure the Centre to amend Article 371 of the Constitution so that backward regions availed benefits of special reservation in employment and education and thereby progress at par with developed regions.

He alleged that the Centre had adopted step-motherly attitude towards the State and warned of taking State’s struggle for justice to the streets if the Centre continued to ignore the long-pending and genuine demands of the State.