Chief Minister Siddaramaiah inspects floods, slammed for absence during drought

Published Sep 7, 2014, 12:18 pm IST
Updated Mar 31, 2019, 6:36 am IST
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah takes stock of the damage caused by heavy rain in Gulbarga on Saturday (Photo: DC)
 Chief Minister Siddaramaiah takes stock of the damage caused by heavy rain in Gulbarga on Saturday (Photo: DC)

Gulbarga: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who made a whirlwind tour of the district on Saturday to see for himself the damage caused by the recent spell of heavy rain, was unprepared for the criticism  his ministers drew for failing to visit Gulbarga when it was in the grip of a drought not so long ago.

Mr Siddaramaiah, who was accompanied by revenue minister, Srinivas Prasad and agriculture minister, Krishna Byre Gowda had to face a barrage of questions from reporters who wanted to know why they had not visited the region when it reeled under a drought.

“Where were these ministers then? Why did they not visit the affected districts even once?” he was asked. Taken aback, the Chief Minister, claimed the ministers had monitored the situation from Vidhan Soudha. But then it was Mr Prasad and Mr Byre Gowda’s turn to face some tough grilling, prompting Mr Siddaramaiah to ask the reporters, “have you people come here to pick a fight with us?”.

Acknowledging that extensive damage had been caused by rain in eight districts of north Karnataka, including Gulbarga, Raichur and Gadag, Mr Siddaramaiah put the loss at around Rs 400 crore. “In all, 22 people have died and crop over 53,000 acres damaged,” he added.

Replying to a question, Mr Siddaramaiah said the process of reconstituting boards and corporations would start soon. As for expansion of the cabinet, he said he had not yet discussed it with the party high command. “The matter will be broached once Mr Digvijay Singh who is in the USA, returns,” he explained, adding that the cabinet meeting in Gulbarga would be held some time before the next Assembly session beginning in November.

Location: Karnataka


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