Karnataka govt faces Hegde heat
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Karnataka Lok Ayukta Justice Santosh Hegde's resignation and the disappearance of over 5 lakh tonnes of iron ore seized at his instance was the dominating issue in the Karnataka Assembly on Tuesday with the opposition Congress and JDS moving adjournment motions to discuss the issue.
The ruling BJP government agreed to debate the issue but insisted the motion should be taken under rules that do not lead to a vote on the motion.
Congress leader Siddaramaiah called the disappearance of iron ore and export of several lakh tonnes of iron ore without any permits or tax payment "daylight robbery" of the country's natural resources. He said the scam could run into Rs 3,000 crore making it "the biggest scam of the century".
Siddaramaiah, in preliminary arguments for pressing the adjournment motion, said the state government had insulted the institution of the Lok Ayukta through indifferent treatment.
JD(S) leader in the Assembly H D Revanna who also spoke on the adjournment motion said Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa has to take direct responsibility for the illegal happenings in the mining and forest departments since both ministries are handled by Yeddyurappa.
Yeddyurappa said the government is ready for a debate on the resignation of the Lok Ayukta as well as the history of the dilution of the powers of the Lok Ayukta in Karnataka. The resignation has hit the image of the BJP, he said.