K’taka ministers watch porn in Assembly
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Last Updated: Wednesday, February 08, 2012, 00:25
  
Bangalore: In a huge embarrassment to the BJP government in Karnataka, two ministers were allegedly caught on TV camera watching porn on mobile phone during Assembly proceedings in the first such ugly incident in the state's legislative history.

A regional TV channel aired the footage of Minister for Cooperation Laxman Savadi and Minister for Women and Child Development CC Patil allegedly watching the clippings, when the House debated the issue of hoisting of Pakistan national flag in a town in Bijapur district on new year's day.

The footage telecast also by some regional channels after the Assembly adjourned for the day, showed Savadi watching the video and later joined by Patil for a brief while.

In a bizarre defence, Savadi on Tuesday night admitted to watching the porno footage but ruled out resigning from the ministry.

"Yes it is like a blue film. It was on Minister for Ports Krishna Palemar's mobile. The video clippings had women dancing and they were raped by four men. Palemar told me such things happen abroad in rave parties. Since the House was discussing the Malpe rave party, I watched it," he said.

Today's incident comes even as the government is battling the Opposition attack over the recent party held by foreigners in Malpe beach in Udupi district during a government sponsored tourism festival.

Savadi went on saying, "Yes I watched it (clipping). But I have not committed any crime. It is not on my mobile. Just watching it is not a crime," Savadi said.

"No question of resigning. Such thought is not on my mind," Savadi said as the episode sparked an outrage with the opposition demanding their resignation and disqualification from Assembly membership.

Chief Minister Sadananda Gowda, on a tour of Chikmagalur district, said, "It is for the Speaker to take action against the ministers if they are found guilty of watching porno clippings in the Assembly." He said he has not watched the TV footage.

Speaker KG Bopaiah said, "I will look into it. Law will take its own course."

Opposition Congress leader Siddaramaiah said both the ministers should quit forthwith or they should be dismissed. Former chief minister and JD-S leader HD Kumaraswamy said Sadananda Gowda should drop them and the ministers should be disqualified from Assembly membership.

Meanwhile, protests erupted in some parts of the state demanding resignation of ministers Savadi and Patil for allegedly watching the clippings in the Assembly.

Protesters in hundreds took to the streets raising slogans "Down Down BJP government" in Shimoga, Mysore, Raichur and Belgaum among other places, reports said.

Legislative Council Chairman DH Shankaramurthy said "it is disgraceful. This should not have happened."

The incident could not have come at a worse time for BJP rocked by infighting amid hectic lobbying by BS Yeddyurappa to regain the chief minister's post or at least become the party's state unit president.

Several BJP leaders, including Yeddyurappa, are also facing corruption cases bringing the first-ever BJP government in the south under a cloud.

PTI


First Published: Tuesday, February 07, 2012, 21:36


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