Two former chief ministers of Karnataka the BJP’s B S Yeddyurappa and the Janata Dal Secular’s H D Kumaraswamy who are besieged by a flurry of corruption cases from their tenures, including several filed in recent days, have decided to forge an informal alliance to take on the Siddaramaiah led Congress government during a monsoon legislature session next week.
The two former chief ministers who were involved in a short-lived BJP-JDS alliance government in 2006-07 held a brief meeting in the north Karnataka town of Hubbali on Tuesday and decided to combat the Congress government unitedly during the Belgaum legislature session starting June 29.
Both Yeddyurappa and Kumaraswamy are set to launch separate padayatras over the next few days – expressing solidarity with farmers in the state and protesting the failure of the state to provide adequate support in terms of procurement prices – that will culminate at Belgaum on June 29.
The two former chief ministers have decided to join forces at a time when a series of corruption cases has been filed against them, especially Yeddyurappa, under the Prevention of Corruption Act on the basis of a CAG report on illegalities in denotification of land acquired by the state during the 2007 to 2012 period when Yeddyurappa and Kumaraswamy were chief ministers.
The BJP’s foremost leader in Karnataka Yeddyurappa at present has as many as 10 corruption cases pending against him. The two leaders have accused the Siddaramaiah lead Congress government of attempting to muzzle their protests by filing cases against them.
“Let them file cases against me I will face them but why are they filing so many cases against Yeddyurappa who is already facing so many legal problems. This government has not been able to meet needs of the farmers in the state and we are going to take out a padayatra to protest,” former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy said.
“The Congress government is not making life easy for farmers. We had a brief meeting and we have decided to work together in the legislature session. We need to protect the interest of farmers,” Yeddyurappa said following his meeting with Kumaraswamy.
Chief Ministe Siddaramaiah meanwhile claimed that the Congress government was in no way linked to the cases brought against the two former chief ministers. “The FIRs have been registered by the Lok Ayukta police on the basis of the CAG report. We are not connected to it in any way. They have committed mistakes and are now blaming us. It is a sign guilt,” Siddaramaiah said.