Karnataka CM faces fresh bout of dissidence

Troubles grew for Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa with a group of about 20 MLAs including ministers raising a banner of revolt Tuesday in a fresh bout of dissidence, even as opposition tried to corner him over land scam allegations.

Bangalore: Troubles grew for Karnataka
Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa with a group of about 20 MLAs
including ministers raising a banner of revolt Tuesday in a
fresh bout of dissidence, even as opposition Congress and JD(S)
tried to corner him over a series of land scam allegations.

The dissident activity by a section of the ruling BJP
came on a day when Governor H R Bhardwaj submitted a report to
President Pratibha Patil on alleged irregularities in payment
of compensation to land owners by Karnataka Industrial Area
Development Board(KIADB).
"I have taken note of the various controversies on the
KIADB scam. I have informed the Central government about it
and submitted a report to President Pratibha Patil, a copy of
which has also gone to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh,"
Bhardwaj told reporters here.

An emergency Cabinet meeting is also being held
tomorrow to take stoack of the situation.

Led by Excise Minister M P Renukacharya, the dissident
group comprises disgruntled legislators who either failed to
get ministerial berths or are unhappy with the recent Cabinet
recast or those eyeing key posts in boards and corporations.

Yeddyurappa was closeted with BJP`s state unit
president K S Eshwarappa, ministers loyal to him and also met
senior RSS functionaries and discussed steps to deal with the

The dissidents, who are set to be away in Tamil Nadu,
had switched-off their cell phones and remained incommunicado,
as desperate attempts were made to reach out to them.

Eshwarappa chose to put up a brave front, brushing
aside suggestions of dissident activities. "There is no
dissidence, it`s only rumour."
He, however, admitted that some legislators who did
not get ministerial berths are dissatisfied and discussions
would be held with them. The government was not facing
instability, Eshwarappa said.

The fresh dissident activity came even as the BJP`s
first government in south faced land scam allegations in the
recent days as a spirited opposition -- the Congress and the
JDS -- tried to corner Yeddyurappa and Minister for
Information Technology, Biotechnology and Housing Katta
Subramanya Naidu.

Eshwarappa said an emergency cabinet meeting would be
held at 10 am tomorrow.

He also ruled out any move now against Naidu, facing
allegations relating to denotifying of land of KIADB when he
was Industries Minister, saying action would be taken only if
charges were proved by court and he was named by Lokayukta.

Meanwhile, leaders of the JDS, under the leadership of
state unit president and former chief minister H D
Kumaraswamy, held a meeting in the backdrop of the dissident
activity in the BJP.

Talking to reporters separately, Leader of Opposition
in the Legislative Assembly and Congress leader Siddaramaiah
called Yeddyurappa a "liar" and "irresponsible" and likened
his Cabinet to "Ali Baba and 40 thieves", in the context of
land scam allegations against the government.

"If the chief minister has an iota of respect, he
should quit immediately," Siddaramaiah said.