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BJP to protest against ‘hostage' situation

Special Correspondent

Demonstration today at resort where rebel MLAs are housed


Our 11 MLAs have not resigned from the party: Ashok

‘Defections have made Congress frustrated'


BANGALORE: Bharatiya Janata Party workers, who staged a protest in front of the residence of the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Siddaramaiah on Wednesday, will stage a similar demonstration on Thursday in front of the Golden Palm Resorts where the Janata Dal (Secular) has kept “captive” 11 BJP rebel MLAs, Home and Transport Minister R. Ashok said on Wednesday .

He also alleged that the Congress leadership in the State has failed to keep its flock together and that was why its frustrated leaders staged a protest at the residence of Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa on Tuesday evening.

Addressing presspersons, along with five other Bharatiya Janata Party Ministers, Mr. Ashok confirmed that no Congress MLA had joined the BJP. “Why should they accuse us just because someone wants to leave the Congress party?” Mr. Ashok said, apparently referring to the Congress charge that the BJP had lured away its Jagalur MLA, S.V. Ramachandra. Mr. Ramachandra resigned from the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday.

“Our 11 MLAs have not resigned from the party. Why is the JD(S) holding them captive at the resort,” Mr. Ashok asked. The BJP MLAs had also stayed at the same resort when the Yeddyurappa Government was asked to prove its majority on October 14.

“The Government will take appropriate action at an appropriate time for the release of the rebel BJP MLAs,” Mr. Ashok warned.

Name calling

Questioning the action of Opposition parties in transporting the BJP rebels to hotels in Goa and Chennai, he said the Opposition had no right to speak about “BJP's politics of morality”. He termed the JD(S) a “local political outfit” and said the party has aligned itself with the Congress to dislodge the BJP Government.

Ministers Basavaraj Bommai, Govind Karjol, G. Janardhan Reddy, Umesh Katti and Jagadish Shettar were present, and they joined in lashing out at the Congress and the JD(S) leaders for holding the BJP rebel MLAs captive.

Blame game

Mr. Ashok went on to claim that the Congress was blaming the BJP for the defection of its MLAs when the fact was that it had failed to contain the revolt within the party against defectors ruling it. The Congress, which is now dominated by “defectors” such as Mr. Siddaramaiah and KPCC chief R.V. Deshpande, are fearful of losing more Congress MLAs.

‘Unbecoming '

The protest in front of Mr. Siddaramaiah's house was held under the leadership of Jayanagar MLA B.N. Vijay Kumar, who is also president of the party city unit. BJP's Bangalore city legislators and corporators from the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike took part in it.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Vijay Kumar accused Mr. Siddaramaiah of spoiling the sanctity of the Legislative Assembly by kicking its door during the vote of confidence.

He alleged that the Opposition parties had publicly proved that they wanted to grab political power through dubious means uncaring of democratic principles.

Several BJP legislators, including Ashwath Narayan, Vishwanath, Raghu, Muniraju, Derrick Fullinfaw (nominated Anglo Indian MLA) and Bharati Shetty, besides corporators took part in the protest.

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