Karnataka: Drought hits 27 districts, BJP in CM tussle
Jul 06 2012, 12:42 | By IBNLive.com
A drought of a different kind has affected Karnataka. One of governance. While 27 districts in the state are facing a rainfall deficit and farmers are worried, the state's Agriculture, Water and Rural Development Ministers have not taken corrective steps. In fact, what they are more bothered about is who should be sitting in the Chief Minister's Chair.
Estimates show that just about 15% of the crops have been sown this time in the state. There is a drinking water crisis in over a hundred taluks and the three ministers who should be most worried - Agriculture Minister Umesh Katti, Rural Development Minister Jagadish Shettar and Water Resources Minister Basavaraj Bommai - are busy plotting how to oust their Chief Minister Sadananda Gowda.
In fact Gowda made it very clear that if the ministers don't take up drought relief in their zones soon enough, the voters will never let the party come back to power.
"Whatever we have fight over, let it be internal. The people have done no wrong. They shouldn't suffer," he said.
Ever since Sadananda Gowda became the Chief Minister, the BJP MLAs in the state, especially those belonging to the former chief ministers BS Yeddyurappa's camp, have proved time and again that it does not need an opposition.
The Yeddyurappa camp ensures that it trips the government almost once in three to four weeks. And who is paying the price for this political inconsistency? The people.
Farmers' groups in the state say that areas in its north are the worst hit by drought-like conditions, with not even enough fodder for cattle.
Says Veera Sangaiah, Vice President, Raitha Sangha, "Ministers in-charge of various districts are never there... They sit in the homes of other rebel leaders and chalk out strategies. This groupism and indifference is forcing many farmers to migrate as labourers."
And as for the man on the street, the frustration couldn't be greater.
"The monsoon has been delayed this time... There are so many issues... Children are not getting water in their schools... They should worry about all this," says a hapless parent.
"It is better to focus on roads and infrastructure, helping the poor than indulge in petty politics between themselves," says another.
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