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Why should I quit, asks CM

Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa on Saturday accused governor HR Bhardwaj of acting as a ‘political agent of the UPA government’ in sanctioning his prosecution on corruption charges and refused to step down from the post.

india Updated: Jan 23, 2011 00:48 IST
HT Correspondent

Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa on Saturday accused governor HR Bhardwaj of acting as a ‘political agent of the UPA government’ in sanctioning his prosecution on corruption charges and refused to step down from the post. “Why should I quit,” Yeddyurappa said in response to a query at a press conference. “Has any chief minister resigned on the filing of a complaint against him,” he added.

Yeddyurappa said Bhardwaj had been acting in collusion with the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) on a mission to destabilise the BJP government ever since he took charge. “He (Bhardwaj) has turned the Raj Bhawan into the office of the opposition… he looks more like an opposition leader than the constitutional head of the state.”

Yeddyurappa said Bhardwaj took over the role of an investigating officer and gave the sanction for his prosecution without preliminary inquiry.

“Neither was I given a copy of the petition (by the advocates who sought the governor’s sanction for his prosecution) nor my clarification sought.”

The leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s only government in the south said the governor, despite being a constitutional head, had crossed all limits of the Constitution and was persistently misusing his position and power to score brownie points for the Congress.

Karnataka’s law and parliamentary affairs minister Suresh Kumar said the state government was pursuing all the courses, including legal remedies, to overcome the situation. “We will come out with our plan of action. We are strong on law; we are strong on legal grounds.”

Kumar said Yeddyurappa was likely to file a petition before the HC on Monday challenging Bhardwaj’s sanction to prosecute him under the Prevention of Corruption Act.