Belagavi: The winter session of the state legislature began on a lacklustre note in Belagavi on Monday in the absence of many Congress leaders, including former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who is leaving for Malaysia.
Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwar too did not attend as he was in Chennai to visit ailing Siddaganaga Matha seer Shivakumara Swamiji in hospital. Also absent were KPCC president Dinesh Gundurao and former Minister M.B. Patil. The Jarkiholi brothers made a brief appearance in the lobby of the Suvarna Soudha and left before the House adjourned for the day.
Ramesh Jarakiholi, who is minister in-charge of Belagavi district, did not turn up to receive Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy at the airport either although this has been the practice during previous legislature sessions. His bête noir and Belagavi MLA Laxmi Hebbalkar was, however, at the airport to welcome the Chief Minister.
The BJP, meanwhile, appeared to be biding its time to take on the government on various issues such as sugarcane growers' problems and the alleged misappropriation of funds allocated in the budget for 2016-17 by the then Siddaramaiah government.
State BJP president B.S.Yeddyurappa asserted on Monday that he would not let the Chief Minister sleep by raising burning issues such as farmers’ suicides in the session.
Accusing the Chief Minister of behaving arrogantly and disrespecting Opposition leaders, he regretted that he was unwilling to take criticism from the media too. Both the Houses later adjourned for the day after paying tribute to departed leaders....