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|January 20, 1998||
Patel seeks trust vote as three ministers quit
Karnataka Chief Minister J H Patel will seek a vote of confidence on January 27, following the resignation of three Janata Dal ministers, led by R V Deshpande, from his ministry.
The ministers joined the apolitical Rashtriya Navanirmana Vedike of Ramakrishna Hegde along with three ruling party legislators.
Addressing the media, Deshpande, however, said they continued to be members of the ruling Janata Dal. Others to join the Vedike were Revenue Minister Ramesh Jigajinagi and Sports Minister Ajay Kumar Sarnaik, former ministers K S Beelagi and B R Yavagal and Govind Karjola.
The ministers submitted their resignation letters to Chief Minister J H Patel during their meeting with him on Tuesday morning.
The move by the ministers and the legislators was considered tactical as they would have lost their membership of the state assembly if they had joined the Lok Shakthi, the political party founded by Hegde.
Asked whether they feared action under the provisions of the anti-defection act, Deshpande shot back, "When we have resigned as ministers, where is the fear of the anti-defection act?"
Asked whether they would be resigning from the Janata Dal, they said they would take a decision after consulting other leaders. They indicated that several others were likely to follow them.
Praising Patel, the leaders lambasted former prime minister H D Deve Gowda and Human Resource Development Minister S R Bommai for the present state of affairs in the JD.
Deshpande accused Deve Gowda of systematically trying to destroy the JD. ''He did it in Karnataka, Bihar and Orissa,'' the minister said. ''He also systematically prevented my growth as I was considered close to Hegde.''
Accusing Deve Gowda of promoting his family members, he said, "We had become suspects from the day Hegde was expelled. Power had gone to Deve Gowda's head and he expelled Hegde."
He said Patel stood by them when the former prime minister had insisted on their dismissal from the state ministry.
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