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Congress workers feel Reddy brothers may disrupt padayatra

Special Correspondent


Deshpande denies differences with Siddaramaiah

‘Sriramulu's actions unbecoming of a Minister'


Tavarakere (Tumkur district): Are the Reddy brothers in the B.S. Yeddyurappa Ministry planning to disrupt the Congress padayatra when it enters Bellary district to celebrate its 15-day Bangalore-Bellary chalo was the talking point among some party workers participating in the programme.

A few workers, who talked to The Hindu at Tavarekere, near Sira in Tumkur district, where the padayatris took rest before starting their afternoon trek, expressed their fear that the Congress march would be disrupted by the anti-social elements unleashed by the Reddy brothers.

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president R.V. Deshpande, leading the padayatra, told presspersons that some 30 persons with shaven heads had come to the public meeting held by the party at Sira. He said that the kind of conflicting statements Health and Family Welfare Minister B. Sriramulu had been making and the tantrums lent credence to such a fear. He said that tonsuring of the head by Mr. Sriramulu as a counter to the Congress padayatra was unbecoming of his stature as Minister, who swears by the Constitution in a democracy.

Congress workers, he said would continue their fight in a united and Gandhian style and they would behave with discipline. Mr. Deshpande clarified that there were no differences between him and the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Siddaramaiah and nothing of that sort had cropped up. There was agreement on holding press conference at one place and all of them should go in one group. But, what the presspersons witnessed was that the leaders were actually trekking in batches and not in unison.

KPCC working president D.K. Shivakumar was guiding the Seva Dal and party workers using a microphone. Next came Mr. Siddaramaiah and Roshan Baig, MLA, along with a big gathering of people, followed by the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council Motamma with a small group of Mahila Congress workers singing songs criticising the BJP Government. Mr. Deshpande and Deputy Leader of the Congress in the Assembly T.B. Jayachandra, who represents Sira were coming in the last.

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