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Rediff.com  » News » Mining scam: Why K'taka Guv won't jump the gun?

Mining scam: Why K'taka Guv won't jump the gun?

July 22, 2011 21:58 IST

Karnataka Governor Hans Raj Bhardwaj, who has been let down once too often by New Delhi, is unlikely to take any precipitate action against Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa, even though, according to the Constitution, he has considerable powers once it comes to the Lokayukta, say highly-placed sources.

A source said that the Governor is learnt to be waiting for Lokayukta Santosh Hegde to present a copy of the report to him and once that is done, say sources he can order a further probe into the findings of the report.

He can also ask that the report be tabled in the assembly, so that it would be on record and the documents which have been annexed with the report also become public property.

Sources close to the Bhardwaj say that at the moment, since the report is not with him, he is said to be weighing the available options.

He is, however, not in the mood for recommending any drastic options. Firstly, because they are not binding on the chief minister; and second, because he has been let down once too often by the United Progressive Alliance government, where he has not got the backing he needed to take a tough stand on Yeddyurappa.

Bhardwaj has been regularly informing New Delhi of the goings on in the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Karnataka and the corruption there; particularly related to the mining issues now documented by the Lokayukta, and activities of the Reddy brothers.

The Governor sought to act against the CM in the past also on issues of corruption, but got no support, so much so that it gave the BJP a handle with which to attack Bhardwaj and ask that he be shifted from the state.

The Governor who has said that he has the highest regards for Hegde was unhappy at the manner in which senior Congress leaders from the All India Congress Committee attacked the Lokayukta.

He is of the opinion that Hegde was doing a great job in finally nailing Yedurappa and the illegal mining racket in Karnataka, and Congress leaders should not have attacked him like they did.

It is interesting, that within the BJP there is division on how best to handle the yet-to-be submitted report.

With the monsoon session of parliament just a week away, the BJP would find it difficult to retain its high moral ground on corruption if it decides to stay with Yeddyurappa.

The Congress again attacked the BJP in Karnataka saying that the final act has been written in the Karnataka natak which had gone on for too long.

Yeddyurappa, on his part is credited with the mentality that he can still continue as the chief minister. Failing this, he is also prepared to call a snap poll in the state, though elections are still two years away.

The BJP leadership certainly does not endorse the CM when it comes to an early poll, but at the moment Yedurappa is a powerful Lingayat leader who has the support of both the members of legislative assembly and money power to carry his word through.

A senior BJP leader admitted that in such a scenario, the issue has to be sensitively handled keeping all options in mind.

In Delhi, the core committee of the Congress which met on Friday evening discussed the various options on Karnataka, and the best course of action for the Governor, and how the government should respond in the event that Yeddyurappa does not step down.

Renu Mittal