Bengaluru: With severe opposition rising from various quarters for the forest ministry having been allotted to him, Minister for Forest Anand Singh has said that he is open to changing the portfolio, if Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa wants him to do so.
Addressing the reporters at the Vidhana Soudha, Singh said that if the forest department is going to suffer from him becoming the minister, then he is ready to give up the ministry.
Congress leaders have attacked the BJP for giving the forest ministry to Singh and said that it was a clear conflict of interest as the minister is a mining baron himself.
Further, at least 15 cases pertaining to illegal mining and forest encroachment stand registered against Singh. Based on these issues, the Congress has demanded the CM to take back the ministry from Singh.
Responding to these allegations, Singh said that although 15 cases are against him, the forest department has not filed even a single case against him.
"The opposition parties must first read the charge sheet filed against me, then go talking about it," he said.
Congress leader Ugrappa too, in a press meet, said that the Congress will stage a massive stir if the portfolio is not taken back.
Ugrappa said that in 2008, he himself had submitted a report that Singh had encroached on forest land and also carried out illegal mining on the same land. "It is in connection with the same issue that he served jail time," Ugrappa said adding that even the then Lokayukta report clearly states Singh's misdeeds.
It may be noted that Singh was first given the food and civil supplies portfolio, which was later changed.
© Copyright NewsKarnataka 2019 . All Rights Reserved.