Updated: August 12, 2021 4:11:54 pm
M P Kumaraswamy, a BJP MLA representing Mudigere Assembly constituency, sat on a one-man protest outside Bengaluru’s Vidhana Soudha on Thursday demanding the Basavaraj Bommai-led government to release relief funds towards his constituency which was affected by floods last month.
The MLA demanded that his constituency in Chikkamagaluru district should be considered for relief funds as per the norms of the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).
“I wouldn’t like to specify why other (constituencies) got funds this time. But if Shivamogga city (represented by senior BJP minister K S Eshwarappa) comes under NDRF, why isn’t Mudigere, that received 900 mm rainfall, not brought under the same?” he questioned.
Further, speaking to reporters as he sat in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue in Vidhana Soudha, Kumaraswamy highlighted that his constituency was “neglected repeatedly”. He explained, “It took us 15 days to recover the bodies of the deceased after facing severe floods in 2019 when six people were washed away. The people had then lost homes and coffee estates, but got no relief as we were neglected. We did not raise many alarms then but this has repeated after the floods again last year and this time.”
Meanwhile, Kumaraswamy added, “Despite our own party being in power, there is neglect. The situation was better when (H D) Kumaraswamy (of the JDS) was the CM in the first year after I was elected (in 2018). Addressing my request, he had allocated grants then.”
The MLA was seen with a placard demanding CM Bommai to release NDRF and SDRF funds for Mudigere and to compensate those who lost homes, land and crops in his constituency.
However, the legislator could not meet Bommai as the CM was on a visit to Udupi on Thursday. “Revenue Minister R Ashoka met Kumaraswamy after which he promised the Mudigere MLA to ensure that the issue would be addressed and brought to the notice of the CM,” sources in the party told The Indian Express.
This protest comes at a time when there are rumblings in the Bommai cabinet over portfolio allocation. Days after Bommai distributed portfolios to his cabinet members, MTB Nagaraj and Anand Singh had openly stated their unhappiness over the portfolios allocated to them. Nagaraj has been allotted the municipal administration, small scale and public sector industries portfolio, while Anand Singh has been given tourism, ecology and environment portfolios in the cabinet.
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