iconimg Sunday, August 30, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Bangalore, February 07, 2012
The dignity of the Karnataka assembly took a severe beating on Tuesday when two BJP ministers were caught watching a pornographic video when the House was in session.
Camera crew of TV channels filmed cooperation minister Lakshmana V Savadi watching porn clips on his cellphone and women and child development minister CC Patil peeping in during a discussion in the House.

After local TV channels began airing the footage, Savadi reportedly blocked power supply in his constituency, Athani, in north Karnataka. He said later, "I was watching the video clip of how a woman was raped by four people to know about the incident and prepare for a discussion on the ill-effects of a rave party in Udupi recently. I do not have the cheap mentality to see pornographic visuals."

Speaker KJ Bopaiah said, "I cannot comment on the issue unless it is verified by my office and proven. Nobody is above the law of the land and if the minister is found guilty, he will face the consequences."

State BJP president KS Eshwarappa said he had brought the matter to the notice of the party high command, which would take a decision.

Opposition leader Siddaramaiah of the Congress demanded Savadi's ouster from the assembly. "I want the speaker to dismiss this minister. This is shameful. We will protest till the government takes action," he said.

Chief minister DV Sadananda Gowda, in Chikmagalur on an official tour, could not be reached for comment.

The incident has blown up in the BJP's face within days of a controversy over the rave party at Udupi, which Savadi referred to in his defence. The opposition has slammed the CM for allowing the party at a government function for tourism development, where foreigners reportedly behaved in an obscene manner. Initially, Gowda defended the party, citing tourism promotion, but ordered a probe before leaving for Chikmagalur.