Karnataka BJP leaders court arrest as they try to lay siege to CM''s office in Bengaluru

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Bengaluru, Feb 7 (PTI) BJP legislators in Karnataka were taken into preventive custody when they tried to lay siege to the Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's office as part of their protest against the alleged failures of Congress government on Wednesday.

BJP legislators and leaders led by the party state president B Y Vijayendra staged a sit-in demonstration in front of Mahatma Gandhi's statue near Vidhana Soudha, which houses the State Legislature and Secretariat of Karnataka.

Thereafter, they marched towards the office of the Chief Minister, who was away in Delhi, inside the Vidhana Soudha, prompting police to take them into preventive custody. .

The BJP staged the protest apparently to counter the dharna held in Delhi by the ruling party under the leadership of Siddaramaiah to "fight for financial justice".

Holding placards, the BJP protesters raised slogans condemning the Congress government for allegedly failing to offer relief to drought-hit farmers and incentives to milk producers.

Former Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Leader of Opposition in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly R Ashoka, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Council Kota Srinivas Poojary and many former ministers were among those who took part in the agitation.

Addressing the gathering, Bommai said: "there was never any other government, which did so much drama in the history of Karnataka by staging demonstrations at New Delhi against the Centre".

“The government has failed on every count, be it administration, law and order, development works, protecting the water resource of the state and drought management. How can they stage a demonstration in Delhi? They should be ashamed of it," he said.

He challenged the Chief Minister to disclose the extent of funds that the State had received from the Centre during the UPA dispensation as well as the BJP-led NDA rule.

Speaking on the occasion, Vijayendra said the government which came to power "through the drama called ‘five guarantees’" has failed on all fronts and the Chief Minister is clueless about what to do next.

“There is an atmosphere against Congress in the state. So, the Congress leaders have resorted to another theatrics today (in New Delhi). More than 500 farmers have committed suicide in the state but the government has not yet responded to them. Now it is trying to pass the buck to the Centre for its failure,” he alleged.

Earlier speaking to reporters in Shivamogga, BJP MP B Y Raghavendra alleged that the Congress government is 'staging a political drama' to cover up its failures.

He said voters of Karnataka had elected the Congress to power with a lot of expectations but in just six months people as well as MLAs of the ruling party lost hope in the government as no developmental activities were taking place in the State.

"Now the government is not in a position to face the impending Lok Sabha election. They are trying to divert public attention from their failures. To cover up their failure, they are staging this political drama of pointing fingers at the Centre," Raghavendra, son of former Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa, said. PTI GMS RS RS

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