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Special committee to probe Karnataka Council ruckus, submit report within 20 days

Legislative Council chairperson K Pratapachandra Shetty said he sought a report from the panel within 20 days. "The committee will look into the role of everyone — including officials and the marshals — who were present," he said.

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru | December 30, 2020 1:30:34 pm
BJP, Congress MLCs clash in the Karnataka Legislative Council. Deputy Chairman S L Dharme Gowda was pushed off his chair (seen above), in the ruckus over a no-confidence motion against the Chairman. (PTI Photo)

A special committee comprising members of all three political parties in the Karnataka Legislative Council will look into the December 15 incident where BJP and Congress members clashed over who would control the 75-member
Upper House. Ruckus had erupted in the Council over a no-confidence motion against the chairperson.

Legislative Council chairperson K Pratapachandra Shetty said he sought a report from the panel within 20 days. “The committee will look into the role of everyone — including officials and the marshals — who were present,” he said.

BJP legislators had locked the Council’s doors to prevent Shetty (Congress) from entering the House, while Congress legislators forcibly unseated the deputy chairman, S L Dharmegowda of the JD(S), after he was ushered to the chairman’s seat by BJP members.

The committee will be headed by JD(S) MLC Marithibbe Gowda and will also include Congress legislators BK Hariprasad and R B Thimmapur, and H Vishwanath and S V Sankanur from BJP.

Sources said the action was taken after Karnataka Legislative Council Secretary KR Mahalakshmi submitted her response to a show-cause notice issued by the chairman.

“The report had mentioned that SL Dharme Gowda, the then deputy chairman of the Council, had spontaneously occupied the chair to convene the session before the chairman’s arrival. The secretary also mentioned that Gowda occupied the chair and began with the process even after she informed him rules of the House,” sources said.

Incidentally, Gowda was found dead on a railway track in Karnataka’s Chikmagalur district early Tuesday morning. Police said they have found a suicide note near the body.

Chairman Shetty was elected in 2018 when the Congress-JDS government was in power. The ruling BJP is now trying to wrest control of the Chairman’s post with the JDS offering it support. The BJP has 31 MLCs, the Congress 29, the JDS 14 and there is one Independent member in the 75-member Legislative Council.

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