The Karnataka unit of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) staged a counter-protest in Bengaluru on Wednesday, the same day the Congress leaders from the state are protesting against the Union government at New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar. Karnataka BJP alleged that the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government has failed to provide good governance to the people.
BJP state chief BY Vijayendra led the protest, and all the leaders, including former CM Basavaraj Bommai and leader of opposition R Ashoka, staged a demonstration at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi in Vidhana Soudha. The party called Congress’ Jantar Mantar protest a ‘political drama’. The BJP leaders even tried to lock the chamber of CM Siddaramaiah in Vidhana Soudha as a mark of protest against the ruling government.
Former Karnataka CM and senior BJP leader BS Yediyurappa also said that the Congress leaders are protesting in New Delhi only to cover up their failures. He said, “There is no reason to protest against Union government. Congress has lost confidence and will lose miserably in the next elections. That’s why they are resorting to these theatrics.”
Meanwhile, the Siddaramaiah-led Congress staged a massive protest in New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar against the central government for not allotting sufficient funds to Karnataka in the interim budget. The CM said, “Karnataka is number two as far as tax collection is concerned, Maharashtra is number one. This year Karnataka is contributing more than ₹4.30 lakh crores as tax. If we collect ₹100 as tax and give it to the Govt of India, we are only getting ₹12-13 back, that is our share.”
Union Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman, who presented the interim Budget, said that she cannot decide the amount of funds allocated to any particular state. She earlier said, “This is just not a possibility that any finance minister can intervene to say that ‘I don’t like this state, stop payment’. No way. It can’t happen that way. The system is well placed.”
She also claimed that the fund allocation to Karnataka happened as per the 15th Finance Commission.