The budget session of the state legislature, which is starting on February 6, is expected to be a stormy one with the opposition BJP preparing to put the coalition government on the mat over a number of issues, including internal bickerings in the state Congress that landed one of its MLAs in the hospital.
Congress MLA from Kampli in Ballari district J N Ganesh is on the run after an attempt to murder case was registered against him for allegedly assaulting his fellow-party MLA Anand Singh. Congress suspended Ganesh from the party and Singh is currently being treated in a private hospital. The BJP is set to make it an issue and seek an explanation from the government as the incident took place when the party had taken its MLAs to a resort.
“A number of issues, including the brawl involving Congress MLAs, government’s failure to tackle drought, cash seizure in Vidhana Soudha and the Social Welfare Department holding an event when the government had announced state mourning will be discussed. We will seek answers from the government on all these issues,” BJP state general secretary and MLC N Ravi Kumar said.
Developments in the last few weeks had left the coalition partners, especially the Congress leadership, red-faced and the party is also finding it difficult to keep all its MLAs together. Differences in the party were exposed after four MLAs had abstained from the Congress Legislature Party meet (CLP) convened after the BJP’s alleged attempts to topple the government by poaching its MLAs.
During the session, the BJP is likely to demand Backward Classes Welfare Minister Puttaranga Shetty’s resignation. On Saturday, party workers staged a protest in Mysuru when the minister was attending the Republic Day event and demanded his resignation. A typist working in the minister’s office was caught with `25 lakh cash while he was leaving Vidhana Soudha with the unaccounted cash. The case is being investigated by the Anti-Corruption Bureau.
A senior BJP leader said that the party will soon discuss its strategy to take on the government during the session. The party, however, is not planning to move a no-confidence motion against the government, the leader added. Two independent MLAs recently withdrew their support to the government and extended their support to the BJP.