Yeddyurappa sacks three Ministers

10:59AM Tue 21 Sep, 2010

Ahead of a Cabinet reshuffle and expansion of the 32-month-old BJP government on Tuesday, Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa sacked three Ministers, including Gulihatti D. Shekar, who had threatened to commit suicide if dismissed.

The Ministers who have been dropped are Shivana Gouda Naik (Adult Education) and Aravinda Limbaval (Higher Education) besides Mr. Shekar (Sports).

Governor H.R. Bhardwaj has accepted the recommendation of Mr. Yeddyurappa to drop the three Ministers, a Raj Bhavan communiqu?aid.

The sacking of the Ministers came amidst threats of suicide by Mr. Shekar and of resignation by some MLAs, who are lobbying for Ministerial berths.

Earlier in the day, Mr. Yeddyurappa announced that he would undertake the much-awaited reshuffle of the 31-member Ministry on Wednesday.

The sacking was preceded by high drama when a supporter of Mr. Shekar threatened to consume poison in front of Health Minister B. Sreeramulu's house but police intervened and stopped him.

A group of supporters of Mr. Limbaval stopped Mr. Yeddyurappa's entourage while he was on his way for a Cabinet meeting, protesting against his removal.

Supporters of C.T. Ravi, a Ministerial aspirant, who had sent his resignation from Assembly membership to party President, pelted stones at a bus at Hiremagalur in Chikmagalur district, demanding a Ministerial berth for him.

Mr. Shekar had on Monday threatened to commit suicide if dropped from the Ministry, while Mr. Naik has said he would resign his Assembly membership.

Tourism Minister G. Janardhana Reddy, who was the rallying point for dissidents last year, has opposed dropping of independents, including Mr. Shekar, and also Mr. Naik, who quit the JD(S) and joined the BJP in 2008.


Photo : Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa interacts with supporters of Gulihatti Shekar, who, along with two other Ministers, was dropped from the Karnataka Cabinet on Tuesday. Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy