Bangalore: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has now ordered a Lokayukta investigation into the illegal export of minerals including iron ore over the last 10 years. He has also come out in defence of the Reddy brothers who are facing charging of illegal mining even they had once brought him to tears.
In November 2009 Yeddyurappa was reduced to tears by his Cabinet colleagues - the Reddy brothers of Bellary. Yeddyurappa had tried to act against the Reddys' illegal mining in Bellary but in the end they threatened to topple his government and made the chief minister drop his closest Cabinet colleague Shobha.
Now in the midst of a renewed eruption of the old charges of illegal mining, Yeddyurappa, once humiliated by the Reddys, came out to defend them.
"We can't drop ministers merely on allegations. Where is the proof?" he asks.
It is perhaps a reminder that Yedurappa cannot afford to take on Reddy power.
"By not asking for CBI, Yeddyurappa is failing to act against corruption in the state," says Congress MP and Union Law Minister M Veerappa Moily.
Close to BJP Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj, two of the three Redyy brothers and their close aide Sriramulu are ministers in Karnataka.
They funded the BJP's election campaign, got the support of Independents to ensure a majority, control upto 25 MLAs and could topple the government, and that is exactly why they have the power to remain defiant
Even now, the Reddys have decided to disobey the BJP's orders and have asked close confidante Sriramulu to go on a padyatra (march) to counter the Congress' padyatra to expose illegal mining in Bellary.
The Chief Minister and party top brass say they're against a padyatra, but with the Reddy camp defiant, it raises questions again on who's calling the shots in this party.
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