M A I N   N E W S

Yeddyurappa rushes to Delhi, meets Advani
Party delegation to meet Prez today
Faraz Ahmad/TNS

New Delhi, January 23
Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, under threat of private prosecution with Governor HR Bhardwaj granting sanction, paid a day-long flying visit here to apprise his party leadership of the developing situation in Bangalore.

He called on Chairman of BJP Parliamentary Party LK Advani and reportedly met BJP MP and noted lawyer Ram Jethmalani. Sources said Jethmalani may handle the legal aspect of Yedyurappa’s case, though Yeddyurappa later denied seeking Jethmalani’s help to bail him out legally.

Yeddyurappa also met his party MPs from Karnataka and asked them to take a representation to President Pratibha Patil and then decided to fly back to Bangalore tonight. A source close to the Chief Minister said that the President has agreed to meet the delegation at 11.45 am sharp.

The MPs’ delegation will be led by Chairman of BJP Parliamentary Party L.K. Advani and Leaders of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, Sushma Swaraj and in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley will lead the delegation, protesting against the Governor’s action. BJP president Nitin Gadkari is away on an official visit to China.

Incidentally, even though the chief minister wanted to meet Home Minister P Chidambaram today the meeting did not come about because Chidambaram is not in town, said sources close to the chief minister. Chidambaram had supported Bhardwaj’s action. On his arrival the chief minister had stated, “I want to meet Mr Chidambaram and explain all the things... it’s an insult to the people of Karnataka, to the Chief Minister, to the democratic system. This is not the first time Mr Bhardwaj is doing like this. As soon as he became the Governor of Karnataka, he started this. He may be representing Congress even today; he wants the BJP should go and Congress should come to rule,” Yeddyurappa said.

The BJP has already demanded Bhardwaj’s recall and the delegation is expected to make a representation to this effect tomorrow.

Bhardwaj sanctioned the prosecution of Yeddyurappa on Friday, taking cognizance of a request made a group of lawyers about the allegations of his involvement in land scams.

Yeddyurappa described the Governor’s action “Behaving as an agent of the Congress and the JD(S)” and added. “This is nothing but a broad day light murder of democracy and justice.” He again ruled out resigning his post stating that, “The Governor is overreaching his constitutional role. He is trying to destabilise the government. My growing popularity is troubling the Governor.”

Earlier this week, the Cabinet asked the Governor not to sanction the prosecution of the Chief Minister. But Karnataka Lokayukta (anti-corruption watchdog) Santosh Hegde had justified the Governor’s action saying the Governor was within his rights to grant sanction to prosecute the Chief Minister.


Set to move HC

Bangalore: B S Yeddyurappa is likely to move the High Court on Monday seeking a stay on Governor H R Bhardwaj's sanction to prosecute him over corruption charges.

A battery of advocates and legal experts today perused about 93 documents, on the basis of which the Governor accorded his sanction to prosecute Yeddyurappa on January 21, sources close to the Chief Minister said.

Advocates Sirajin Basha and K N Balaraj, on whose petitions the Governor gave the sanction, had yesterday filed two criminal petitions in a city court.

The sources, however, could not say whether Yeddyurappa, who became the first ever chief minister in the state to face prosecution over corruption charges, would also be praying for staying the proceedings on these complaints.

Rejecting the January 19 state Cabinet’s resolution pleading him for dropping the proceedings on the lawyers’ petitions, Bhardwaj had accorded the sanction, which was dubbed by the BJP as constitutionally “improper” and “politicallymotivated”.

Yeddyurappa, who had ruled out his resignation, is camping in Delhi consulting his party top brass on the political crisis his government faced and also on the future course of strategy to handle the situation.

The two advocates were expected to file four more complaints listing 12 additional charges against Yeddyurappa on Monday before Additional City Civil Judge C Hipparagi, who is also the Sessions and the Special Judge for Lokayukta. — PTI


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