BENGALURU: Senior BJP leaders on Friday hit out at former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for calling the newly-inducted ministers “disqualified legislators.”
“Siddaramaiah has often the word ‘disqualified’ to criticize our party legislators who were inducted into the cabinet. He himself had become CM after changing parties, and has no moral right to criticize others,” Revenue Minister R Ashoka said in Hassan. “They became ministers after winning elections by a big margin, unlike Siddaramaiah who had won the 2018 elections by a narrow margin. Also, we don’t know how long will he stay with the Congress if they don’t continue him as the Leader of Opposition,” Ashoka added.
Taking exception to the Congress leader’s remarks, Minister BC Patil said that the Supreme Court had allowed them to contest elections, and they had also been blessed by the voters in their constituencies. “How can Siddaramaiah call us disqualified MLAs?” Patil questioned.
Former ministers A H Vishwanath and N Mahesh too slammed the former CM, and said his remarks are an insult to the Constitution and send out a wrong signal. It implies that everyone gets elected by bribing voters — did Siddaramaiah get elected by bribing voters, Vishwanath questioned. Mahesh asked Siddaramaiah to guide the new ministers, as they were all his supporters.
The former CM, however, stuck by his words, and reiterated that the newly-inducted ministers were called ‘disqualified MLAs’ by the Supreme Court. Responding to a question on how they can be called disqualified even after winning elections, the former CM said, “people know how elections are held in recent times”.
Meanwhile, former CM HD Kumaraswamy too hit out at Siddaramaiah for criticizing the JDS-Congress coalition government. The JDS leader said he worked under tremendous pressure for 14 months, and that Siddaramaiah should think before criticizing the coalition government. The JDS leader clarified that he will not unnecessarily interfere in the administration of the BJP government.
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