Bengaluru: Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar responded to the dispute between contractors and the Congress government in Karnataka by stating that it was merely a propaganda effort carried out by contractors aligned with the BJP.
During a press briefing, Shivakumar mentioned that D. Kempanna, the President of the State Contractors’ Association, and others have affirmed that no government ministers have solicited commissions.
“With 33 years in public service, I am well aware of my responsibilities. The BJP leaders have been involved in numerous scandals, and I am determined to expose them. Considering this context, an investigation has been initiated. I want to make it clear that the BJP assumed we were complacent during their tenure in government. We are fully aware of the events that transpired. If they are attempting to be clever, we are equally informed,” he asserted.
“The BJP should have cleared the bills. They had all powers to release the funds, why they didn’t do it? I have not given consent to a single work yet, where is the kickback to be asked?”
Shivakumar went on to say that he “will give you trial of work done during BJP government. We have committed to give good governance to the people of Karnataka and got elected. I want it to be fare, transparent administration in Karnataka”.
“Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and I have a very big political record,” he added.
“Kempanna is a respectable old man who came and met me and asked to clear the bills pending from the time of BJP government. I asked him why BJP didn’t release funds? I have made a team of IAS officers to look into the works executed at the time of the BJP government. They will investigate the works. We don’t want to harass any contractor or builders and fairly we will help them.”
Shivakumar also said that the BJP is making this a political issue.
“BJP leaders Dr. C.N. Ashwath Narayan, Gopalaiah and R. Ashoka are behindthis. BJP sponsored contractors are carrying out their propaganda,” he claimed.
“They are not able to digest our five guarantees. They are jealous, their workers are questioning them that why they could not give such schemes.”
The contractors jave alleged that Congress-led state government has stopped clearing bills.
But the BJP has claimed that Shivakumar is demanding 15 per cent commission from contractors and also demanded immediate release of pending bills.
Shivakumar has maintained that the available fund is Rs 650 crore and the bills are presented are for Rs 25,000 crore.