No question of recalling Karnataka governor: Chidambaram | delhi | Hindustan Times
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No question of recalling Karnataka governor: Chidambaram

delhi Updated: May 23, 2011 19:25 IST
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Rejecting the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) demand, union Home Minister P.Chidambaram on Monday said there was "no question" of Karnataka Governor HR Bhardwaj's recall in the wake of the cabinet rejecting his report calling for presidents' rule in the state.

"There is no question of recalling the governor. The governor performed his duty. And we took our decision," Chidambaram told reporters here when asked about the BJP's demand and the central government's snub to the governor on his report.

Chidambaram, however, said the government did not find any grounds to impose president's rule in Karnataka, mindful of the legal complications invoking Article 346 of the Constitution may pose.

"We are mindful of the legal position. The power to impose president's rule is a very restricted power. And we think that the facts placed before the CCPA (Cabinet Committee on Political Affairs) did not enable us to reach conclusion that the condition of (Article) 356 (of the constitution) are attracted," he said.

The CCPA Sunday rejected Bhardwaj's report recommending president's rule in the state.

Chidambaram said the government was also "mindful" of a Supreme Court ruling on imposition of Article 356 to dismiss state governments, an apparent reference to the judgment in the SR Bommai case, which laid down strict criteria and safeguards for dismissal of a state government by the central government.

However, the central government would go ahead with its decision to issue an advisory to the Karnataka government headed by BS Yeddyurappa, taking the governor's report into consideration.

Chidambaram said the advisories, to draw attention to issues, had been issued to various state governments from time to time, such as the attacks on minorities in Karnataka and camps of armed political activists in West Bengal in the recent times.

To a query on the contents of the advisory to the Yeddyurappa government, Chidambaram said "don't indulge in corruption" would be the message to the state.

Among the issues the advisory would address would be the complaints from state Lokayukta on corruption against ministers of the BJP government, corruption charges against ministers and indictment of ministers for illegal mining.

When a reporter asked Chidambaram if he will apply the same yardsticks to the central government too that has been rocked by a series of scams, he replied in affirmative.

"Here (centre) too?" the reporter asked, and Chidambaram replied "Yes".

The home minister said he did not feel the governor's report raising several issues of governance was wrong, though the central government has rejected his recommendations.

"But the fact remains, the Supreme Court set aside the speaker's order disqualifying 16 MLAs and made observations which any fair-minded person will know are very strong strictures against the speaker," he said.

Bhardwaj recommended president's rule in the wake of the Supreme Court reversing the Karnataka High Court's verdict upholding the speaker's decision to disqualify 11 BJP rebel legislators and five Independents ahead of a trust vote in the assembly last October.

The BJP, earlier this month, paraded its 114 Karnataka legislators before President Pratibha Patil in a bid to prove its majority in the state assembly. The party also gave letters of support of some more legislators.

The BJP has, including the 11 rebels-turned-loyalists, 120 members in the 225-member assembly.