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‘Free From All Shackles’, Says KR Ramesh Kumar After Resigning As Karnataka Speaker

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K R Ramesh Kumar said he had performed his duty in disqualifying the 14 rebel MLAs and hoped his action would uphold ethics in politics.

Hyderabad: K R Ramesh Kumar, who resigned from the post of speaker of the Karnataka assembly on Monday, said he was free of all shackles after putting in his papers and felt liberated.

Kumar announced his resignation soon after the confidence motion in favour of BS Yediyurappa was cleared and the Appropriation Bill was passed.

“I resigned today as a befitting tribute to Jaipal Reddy,” said Kumar after cutting short the speech of D K Shivakumar, saying he needs to leave for Hyderabad for the funeral of former Union minister Jaipal Reddy.

“I resigned so I should get liberated. I am now free from all shackles,” he said.

Kumar said he had performed his duty in disqualifying the 14 rebel MLAs and hoped his action would uphold ethics in politics. “I felt that I should not sit there for even a moment longer. So I completed my moral obligation to the Constitution and quit my post, thanked the assembly and came out,” he later told reporters.

He added that 17 rebel MLAs in Karnataka, who he had disqualified were free to go to court as it was their fundamental right. “The people of the State were disillusioned with the rebels. They will punish them.”

Kumar also spoke about the issue of nepotism. “Democratic values diminish when political parties destroy their structural form and indulge in advancing personal and family interests. No one needs to point out how many family members are in politics,” he said.

The BJP government led by BS Yediyurappa sailed through the trust vote in the Karnataka assembly today after a bitter power struggle, that saw the 14-month-old coalition government of the Congress and HD Kumaraswamy crash when 16 lawmakers resigned and two independents switched sides.

Describing Jaipal Reddy as a “mentor”, Kumar recalled that that he used to guide and encourage him.

“It (our association) is not just political. We used to share (feelings) at a personal level. He used to guide me, pull me up encourage me I feel like I have lost an elder in the family,” he said.

He hailed Jaipal Reddy for his scholarship and unflinching commitment to the ideals he believed in.

Kumar replied in the affirmative when asked whether he used to discuss with Reddy, politics and various other things. “Definitely. I often talked about (in public speeches) Professor Madhu Dandavate ji…Jaipal Reddy ji. They were great people. They did not enter politics for their livelihood… They stood for the ideals which they believed in till their last breath,” he said.

“There are so many in our country who change colours every day. But they did not do it. They did not change parties for the sake of posts,” he said.

Kumar had said earlier in Bengaluru that during his his 14-month long tenure as Speaker, he had worked according to his “conscience” and in accordance with the Constitution and that he had upheld the of office to the best of his ability.

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