Contractor’s association in K’taka threaten to strike work

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Dubbing the death of contractor Santhosh K. Patil in Karnataka a “murder” by the ruling BJP government, the state Contractor’s Association on Wednesday accused the party of indulging in “rowdyism” and threatened to launch a month-long protest.

“We will stop our work for a month in protest, Association President Kempanna announced.

Speaking to reporters, Kempana stated that presently the most corrupt government is in power in the state. The corruption has exceeded limits in all government departments. “BJP government is indulging in rowdyism. Though we have enough evidence, we are not able to produce it fearing backlash by BJP leaders,” he said.

He demanded that an independent probe be carried out under a retired Supreme Court Judge into the death. “We will submit our evidence against the ministers,” he said.

Despite lodging a complaint with Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, no action was taken. The works will be stopped condemning the negligence of the government for a month from May 25. CM Bommai has become silent,” he said.

“For every work, we need to give 5 per cent commission during the tender process. Corruption is rampant in the CM’s office. It is much more in the Health and Irrigation departments. If grievances of contractors are not addressed within 15 days, we will be forced to protest,” he warned.

“We are not blackmailing. Our allegations are true. Health Minister K. Sudhakar is the most corrupt and he is getting 5 per cent cut in every tender. The ministers decide the allotment of tender much before the tender process. For example, Rs 10,000 crore development works have been taken up in R R Nagar constituency of Bengaluru but the work is substandard,” he maintained.

Rural Development, PWD, BBMP and Irrigation Ministers have their own agents. Even the CM’s office is not an exception. There are audio records on commission given to them. Minister Sudhakar’s family members are carrying out 60 per cent works. His wife gives cheques for works. Son of a Chitradurga MLA has quit medical profession to become a contractor, Kempanna alleged.

Association Vice-President Manjunath said that the legislators should not threaten the contractors. Due to the menace of commission and percentage, the quality of work in the state is being compromised, he said.

Reacting to allegations, Minister for Health Sudhakar stated that the Contractor’s Association President Kempanna is a Congress agent. He challenged him to prove allegations against him and warned of filing a defamation case against him.

Earlier, the Contractor’s Association of the state had written a letter to the Prime Minister alleging that ruling BJP leaders are forcefully taking 40 per cent cut in all the projects executed by the contractors.

The Congress made this a huge issue and even demanded that the President’s Rule be implemented in the state.

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