BR Patil, Karnataka Congress
BR Patil (right) with Rahul Gandhi. File photo

Karnataka Congress MLA threatens to quit at CLP meet, cites self-respect, denies apologising

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Senior MLA B R Patil acknowledged on Sunday (July 30) that he indeed threatened to resign during the recent Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting, citing reasons of “self-respect.”

However, he clarified that he did not apologise for writing a letter to the Karnataka Chief Minister, where he had raised his concerns.

The CLP meeting on Thursday evening was significant as it came amid reports that as many as 30 legislators have written to Siddaramaiah and the party leadership expressing concern over non-implementation of development works in their constituencies.

The behaviour and conduct of certain ministers has upset some legislators, Patil said, as he warned that their fight would continue, if it is not corrected.

Also Read: Congress to meet Karnataka leaders after murmurs of discontent

The Aland MLA, however said he is satisfied with the Legislature party meeting held on Thursday and what transpired there.

“I too have seen media and newspaper reports. I don’t know who has apologised. I have not apologised, nor will I. Have we committed any crime to apologise? Or have we made a big mistake?” Patil said in response to a question that some ministers including Home Minister G Parameshwara had stated that those who wrote letters to the CM had apologised at the CLP meeting.

Speaking to reporters, he said, “There is internal democracy in our party, we have the right to request a legislature party meeting. Accordingly, leaders have called (for the meeting). There was open and detailed discussion in the meeting and I’m satisfied, but I’m not a coward to apologise. If I had committed any mistake, I would have apologised,” he added.

Several legislators are said to be miffed and have complained that they had not been able to get work done in their constituencies, and have not been granted transfers (of government servants) as requested. They have expressed unhappiness regarding some ministers, alleging that they were not cooperating with them.

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According to party sources, Patil, one of the MLAs who wrote to the CM, slammed ministers at the CLP meeting for not taking MLAs into confidence.

They said Patil asserted his rights when Siddaramaiah questioned the need for the letter that was written to him.

Stating that there is no disgruntlement, Patil today told reporters that he along with some legislators wanted certain issues to be discussed for which they had requested that a legislature party meeting be called.

Asked whether he had said that he would resign at the meeting, he said, “I said one thing at one point, that if my self-respect is hurt, I will throw my resignation and go.”

He however did not wish to elaborate as to what the context was in which he made such a statement. “It cannot be discussed openly in the media; we have discussed internally.”

Also Read: Karnataka HC issues notice to Siddaramaiah on petition seeking his disqualification

The behaviour and conduct of certain ministers has upset some legislators, Patil said, adding, “I don’t know whether CM has advised them (ministers) or not… If their behaviour is not right, our fight against it will be there.”

Clarifying that there is no team as such in place to fight against the ministers’ behaviour, Patil, in response to a question, admitted that he walked out of the CLP meeting, and was persuaded by a couple of ministers to get back. But he did not wish to go into details.

He however said that the chief minister subsequently spoke to him over the phone.

Patil, clarifying that the issue that legislators have is not related to transfer of government servants, said that the CM has explained at the CLP meeting about the burden on the exchequer due to implementation of the poll guarantees, and that there will be shortage of funds for developmental works initially this year, which will be set right in the days ahead.

“We are satisfied with what CM said,” he added.

(With agency inputs)

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