Thursday, July 16, 2009

Krishna’s ‘leela’: 50 miss flights

Krishna’s ‘leela’: 50 miss flights
Followers of Byatarayanapura MLA Krishna Byre Gowda hold up commuters on the busy airport road for over an hour, leading to about 50 persons missing flights

Around 50 persons missed their flights on Wednesday, thanks to Youth Congress president and Byatarayanapura MLA Krishna Byre Gowda and his followers who staged a demonstration on the busy Bellary Road near Kodigehalli Cross, bringing the traffic to a grinding halt for over an hour. Police remained mute spectators during the entire show of strength.
The activists were protesting against an incident which took place in front of the MLA’s house in Byatarayanapura on Tuesday night. According to them, few Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers went to Gowda’s house in his absence on Tuesday night and hurled expletives at his wife.
Following this, Gowda’s wife Meenakshi Sheshadri called up police commissioner Shankar Bidari who rushed his men to her rescue.
Police, however, denied the involvement of any BJP workers in the incident. “We have arrested two drunken men — identified as Lakshminarayan alias Aero Thippanna (46) and Manjunath (26), a driver — from the spot. They have been remanded to judicial custody. They are not BJP men as being portrayed. Both are Congress activists and Lakshminarayan is an aspirant for a Congress ticket to contest BBMP elections. They belong to Gowda’s rival group in the Congress party,” police said.
According to police, the duo, accompanied by few others, went Gowda’s house in the night in a Mahindra Scorpio and created ruckus. They reportedly used unparliamentary words against the MLA’s wife when she told them that her husband’s was not there and asked them to come the next morning.
Irked by the incident, Gowda’s followers staged a protest near Kodigehalli Cross around midnight. They returned after the police told them about the arrest of the miscreants.
“There was no need of a second protest, we had already taken action against the miscreants. Despite this, the MLA and his followers staged another protest from 11 am to 12.30 pm blocking the busy Bellary road. This made our job tougher and it caused inconvenience to several people heading towards the airport. They gave a memorandum blaming BJP workers for Tuesday night’s episode. They blocked the road for over an hour,” police said.
Though they condemned the incident of using abusive language at the MLA’s wife, most of the commuters who got stuck in the traffic jam were not mused by the type of protest his followers staged. “We thought Krishna Byre Gowda is a progressive Gen-Next leader who believed in causing least inconvenience to people. But, today’s incident has proved that he is no different from other politicians” said M R Rajani Kumar, a housewife who was going to catch a flight to Mumbai with her family.
“Mr Gowda should have told his followers not block the road. He should have staged a different kind of protest, setting an example for others in the future,” said T Ramkumar, an investment banker from Indiranagar.
“Had the Gowda couple launched a dharna near Mahatma Gandhi statue to protest against the ugly incident, we would have supported them, said Rajesh Singh from Sahakarnagar. “During the last Parliamentary elections, the Gowda couple was found to be the most sensitive of the political lot. But, today’s incident is a blot on their style of functioning,” he added.
Meanwhile, police said they have taken suo motu action against Tuesday night’s incident and the Gowda couple was yet to file a complaint.

My supporters staged the protest because of the constant attacks on us. We dispersed after being told that an ambulance was struck in the traffic jam. What can we do, if we are attacked by rivals day in and day out?
Krishna Byre Gowda


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