Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy on Monday admitted that there's a rift in the JD(S)-Congress coalition government over presenting a full-fledged Karnataka budget.
"Some have suggested that let the budget be presented after the parliament election, so there are issues," said the Janata Dal (Secular) leader and son of former Prime Minister of India HD Deve Gowda.
Kumaraswamy's comment comes a day after a purported video clip showing former Karnataka CM Siddaramaih expressing his displeasure over fresh budget went viral. Siddaramaih held Finance portfolio in the previous government.
The budget is scheduled to be presented in the state assembly on July 5.
“Talks are going on about whether budget has to be presented or not.... I don't know, because, last time when budget was presented in February about hundred legislators who were there then have lost (election), and about hundred new people have come (as MLAs) ...I,” said Kumaraswamy, as reported by PTI.
He added that several members of the coalition government are trying to create confusion around the budget.
Kumaraswamy said he was not at any one's mercy, even as he tried to reaffirm his commitment to protect the interest of farmers with farm loan waiver.
"They (new MLAs) don't know (about old budget). If I continue with the vote on account that was approved by the then MLAs, who have now lost, we will have to see whether it will lead to breach of privilege of new MLAs.
"If someone brings in a privilege motion, what should I do? There are issues," said Kumaraswamy, who also holds the finance portfolio.
Differences between Congress and JD(S) cropped up after former chief minister and Chairman of the Congress-JD(S) coordination committee Siddaramaiah suggested that there's no need for a fresh full-fledged budget and just a supplementary budget would do.
The Chief Minister has been insisting that poor farmers should get the benefits and insisted on farm loan waiver.
"Will I get commission from this? I don't get any commission from this loan waiver. I know to whom commissions go in governments."
Karnataka`s JD(S)-Congress government intends to waive off farm loans amounting to Rs 10,000 crore, including interest, taken by farmers across the state.
"The loans borrowed by the farmers from district cooperative banks and state cooperatives will be waived along with interest on them, costing the exchequer about Rs 10,000 crore," a Chief Minister`s Office functionary told IANS here.
With agency inputs