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Yeddyurappa vs Bhardwaj: Centre, BJP pick sides

world Updated: Jan 22, 2011 16:22 IST

The BJP and the Central government continued on Saturday their spat over Karnataka Governor H R Bhardwaj's decision to allow the filing of criminal cases and prosecute chief minister B S Yeddyurappa on corruption charges.

BJP today rubbished contentions of home minister P Chidambaram and Karnataka lokayukta Santosh Hegde on Yeddyurappa's prosecution, saying that as per legal precedents the Governor should have waited for the ongoing investigations to be completed.

Even as Home Minister P Chidambaram and law minister M Veerappa Moily on Saturday supported Bhardwaj for sanctioning prosecution of Yeddyruppa in alleged land scams.

Accusing Bhardwaj of foisting cases against B S Yeddyurappa, BJP chief Nitin Gadkari has said the chief minister has not committed any "illegal act" in allotment of plots even though denotifying land in favour of his son was "immoral" and "not proper."

Commenting on Bhardwaj's decision to sanction prosecution against Yeddyurappa, Gadkari, who is in China on a five-day visit, told the Indian media in Beijing that denotification of land is the privilege of the chief minister, which was exercised by many of Yeddyurappa's predecessors.

"Denotification of land is a privilege and the right of chief minister given by law. Nothing is wrong with it. Before Yeddyurappa, (former chief ministers H D) Kumarasamy, Dharma Singh and S M Krishna exercised it several times. The Governor has not taken action against them because they belonged to Congress Party," he said.

"Only thing is that BJP and I personally feel that denotifying land for his (chief minister's) son, though it is a legal decision, on the ground of morality, I think it is not good. It is not proper and immoral I think...," he said.

If it is illegal why the government has not taken action against the previous chief ministers? he asked.

Gadkari alleged the Governor's decision was politically motivated and that he was working under the directives of Congress.

The BJP demands his recall as he has already crossed the limits, he said.

It is total discrimination, Gadkari said, claiming that many number of cases filed against Yeddyurappa are politically motivated.

"They are misusing the institution of Governor and creating problems for democracy in the country. It is unfortunate that the institution of Governor is diluted in such a way that people have lost faith," he said.

(With PTI and IANS input)