Saturday, January 22, 2011

Karnataka Cabinet’s unwarranted resolution

The Bhartiya Janata Party may level charge against the Governor H R Bharadwaj of acting in a partisan way and as a Congress agent but it can not evade the blame that despite corruption charges against its Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa, it has failed to act against him. Governor of a state is not sitting in Raj Bhavan for giving go ahead signal to any proposal sent by the state cabinet. He is empowered to look into all its legalities and if he finds anything unwarranted, he can dismiss it forwith. No body is in doubt about the corruption charges against Yeddyurappa about the misuse of his discretionary powers in land allotment to his family members. BJP is required here to act judiciously by asking its Karnataka Chief Minister to step down, pending enquiry. It is no excuse for its CM that previously this type of malpractices have been committed by Congress Chief Ministers and on that ground he can not be prosecuted. Here the BJP has lost moral ground on the issue of corruption. It has also lost all rights to attack the ruling Congress Party on several issues of corruption with which it is beset. The cabinet resolution had asked the Governor to drop the proceedings to prosecute Yeddyurappa and Home Minister R Ashoka on alleged scams on the basis of a complaint filed by lawyers’ forum, saying such a move was nothing short of a farce and colourable exercise on his part.Quoting a Supreme Court order, Bhardwaj pointed out in his letter that “the Governor is entitled to and required to take an independent decision on the basis of the material available and therefore the Cabinet decision recommending to drop the consideration of the petition itself is unwarranted.”Allegations relating to land scams, corruption and manipulation of rules and regulations regarding acquisition and denotifying of public lands regularly appeared in the media since September, 2010.”Allegations of serious nature of corruption were levelled against the office of the Chief Minister by various groups, which submitted representations to him personally, creating a cloud on his (Yeddyurappa’s) personal integrity, Bhardwaj said in the letter. Home Minister P Chidamabaram has rightly criticised BJP for its attack on Karnataka Governor H R Bhardwaj granting sanction to prosecute the chief minister and said the governor’s decision was in accordance with the law. It is not the first time that a Governor has given his sanction to prosecute a chief minister or a minister of the state government. The law in this respect is clear and well-settled.Taking to the street against Governor’s action with the total backing of state government also indicates of constitutional breakdown. It is also correct that Governor is entitled to act as per the tradition set by consititution.Karnataka Governor H R Bhardwaj has rightly dismissed as unwarranted a resolution adopted by the state cabinet asking him to drop proceedings for prosecution of Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa on corruption charges. He has acted within constitutional parameters.

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