Karnataka Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister KS Eshwarappa on Friday said the Cabinet expansion is the responsibility of Home Minister Amit Shah and Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, while stating that there is nothing wrong with Swamy Vachananda's demand for the ministerial berth for his community leaders.
"The Cabinet expansion is the responsibility of Amit Shah and Chief Minister Yediyurappa. The date for the Cabinet expansion has not been decided yet. There is a demand for the ministerial berth. There is nothing wrong with Swamy Vachananda's demand for the Cabinet berth for his community leaders," Eshwarappa told media persons.
"Swamy Vachananda requested the Chief Minister to induct his community leaders in the Cabinet. It is common that all seers respective of their mutts are demanding the ministerial berth. I request all to stop this now," he said.
Eshwarappa's statement comes two days after Karnataka Chief Minister Yediyurappa got visibly irked and offered to resign while attending an event here, after the seer of Panchamsali sect of Lingayats, Swami Vachananda demanded a ministerial berth for BJP MLA Murugesh Nir.
"Yediyurappa will lose the support of Panchamasali Lingayats if Murugesh Nir is not accommodated in the ministry," the seer told the Chief Minister, who was seated right next to him.
An irked Yediyurappa abruptly rose from his seat and stopped the seer halfway in his speech and even touched his feet before adding: "You can make suggestions being a Swami, but please do not demand. It does not suit your position as a seer."
Later on, addressing the audience, Yediyurappa urged the Swamy to understand his position and not make any demands. He added that he was "ready to quit" if demands are made instead of suggestions.
"17 legislators had quit for me to become the Chief Minister. It is their sacrifice and Panchamasali Mutt's blessings with which I have become the Chief Minister. You can suggest me how to govern for three years, But if you are not willing to accept my request, then I'm ready to quit and go home," he said.
Eshwarappa also stated that Home Minister Shah will be holding a rally in Hubli to brief everyone about the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
"Shah will hold a rally in Hubli. He will tell everyone about the CAA and the misconceptions being spreading about the citizenship law. Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are trying to bring real freedom in India," said Eshwarappa.
( With inputs from ANI )