BENGALURU:A war of words has erupted between former prime minister H D Deve Gowda and his one-time protege Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on the JD(S) office dispute.
It all began with Siddaramaiah saying that as a JD(S) president then, he had fought for retaining the office building and now as a Congressman he was trying to take it over.
Responding to this, Gowda retorted that he did not have to learn anything from Siddaramaiah on the Supreme Court’s decision on the building. “I am fully aware of the court’s decision. As a precaution, I had even applied for a BDA site five months ago. They have not given any so far,” he said. “Legally, I still have the right to stay in the existing structure till February 13 when the SC is hearing the Congress’ petition,” he said stressing that he will no more approach the CM for a plot to build a party office.
On the move to build a temporary shed behind the JD(S) office, Gowda said he decided on this as BBMP has given them a plot on lease for just five years. “We cannot build a pucca building on the land with just five years lease....So I decided to erect sheds,” he said.
On Ramalingeshwara Mutt claiming the land, Gowda said it has been under litigation since 1984. He also took exception to Revenue Minister V Srinivasa Prasad’s comment that Gowda was acting like a BPL family seeking land for the office. Gowda said he was not begging anyone. “I cannot afford to buy land at present market rates and build an office,” he said. “If BBMP does not give the land on lease, we will look for a rental space in the city,” he said.
He called for land auditing in Bengaluru to protect government lands.
‘Will Not Contest Polls’ Deve Gowda said this would be his last term as a Lok Sabha member. “I will not be contesting the next election,” he said.