Engaged in a bitter row with the state government over the alleged involvement of three ministers in illegal mining, Karnataka governor HR Bhardwaj on Thursday said he would not be cowed down by the BJP's "vitriolic campaign" against him.
"The crisis is their (BJP's) creation. By blaming me they will not be able to hide the truth from the world. I know my duty and limits," Bhardwaj told HT.
"The BJP would do well to read the statement of their CM Yeddyurappa in the state assembly on 9 July, where he admitted illegal mining was going on in the state," the governor said.
"Before launching an uninformed attack... they should have taken note of what the Lokayukta has submitted to their government on the issue," said the former law minister.
Asked about his meetings with PM Manmohan Singh and Home Minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday, the governor said many issues were discussed.
"I can tell you my view. I have suggested that the Mining Ministry should be asked to set-up a commission of inquiry to probe the allegations of illegal mining in different parts of the country, including Karnataka," Bhardwaj said.
Asked whether Article 355, which empowers the Centre to protect the state against internal disturbance, figured in the meetings, without naming the section, he said Centre was authorised to ask any state to enforce rule of law.
To the BJP charge that he was behaving as a Congress agent, Bhardwaj said, "I am an agent for safeguarding the Constitution and I am not answerable to the BJP. I have been a member of the Congress for four decades, who has a problem with that?"
Bhardwaj and BJP have been at loggerheads following his demand to drop state tourism minister G Janardhana Reddy and revenue minister G Karunakara Reddy, and health minister, B Sreeramulu from the Yeddyurappa government.