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“Have Kannadigas become orphans in this federal structure?”: Kumaraswamy

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JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy on Thursday asked whether Kannadigas have become orphans in this federal structure, as he accused the BJP government at the Centre of being biased towards Karnataka, over the supply of oxygen and COVID vaccines to the state.

In a series of tweets, he also said that the centre should shun the arrogance that comes from the belief that it is the most powerful and instead take measures to fulfil the genuine requirements of Karnataka.

BJP leaders C T Ravi and Tejasvi Surya, however, hit back asking the former Chief Minister to get his facts right before tweeting.

“Despite the court’s order to supply 1,200 MT of oxygen to Karnataka, all that the Centre gave the state is only 120 MT. The Centre has displayed the height of partiality by providing 1,680 MT of oxygen to Uttar Pradesh though it has fewer COVID cases compared to us…,” Kumaraswamy tweeted.

“Have Kannadigas become orphans in this federal structure?” he asked, and said that the “bias” shown by the Centre with respect to Karnataka has been exposed by the statistics furnished by the government itself.

“Why the Centre has so much contempt against Karnataka and Kannadigas? Is it due to the fact that Karnataka has elected the highest MPs for the BJP or is it an effort to project Yediyurappa (Karnataka CM) as a villain?” he further asked.

Replying to Kumaraswamy’s tweet, both Ravi and Surya pointed out that total allocation of oxygen to Karnataka is 1,075 MT and the 120 MT that he was mentioning is through one Oxygen Express train to meet the state’s emergency needs.

“…the total allocation of Oxygen to Karnataka is 1015 MT + 60 MT = 1075 MT. The 120 MT that You (Kumaraswamy) have mentioned here is through one Oxygen Express train to meet State’s emergency needs. As a responsible former CM, You need to consider facts & tweet,” Ravi, who is BJP national general secretary tweeted.

Surya, who is MP from Bengaluru South, said, “Dear Kumaranna, before tweeting a long thread you should have got facts right. Total allocation to Ktaka is 1015 MT + 60 MT of special allocation. That’s totally 1075 MT. The 120 MT that you mention is from only the one Oxy Express train that came to Bengaluru on May 11th.”

Attaching the orders on allocation to Karnataka with his tweet, he said, “I sincerely hope you (Kumaraswamy) will delete your tweet which has wrong facts after this. It’s not right to misguide people of our state with wrong information during a pandemic.”

The state on Tuesday had witnessed the arrival of the first Oxygen Express, carrying 120 tonnes of liquid oxygen.

Accusing the centre of showing serious bias against Karnataka, Kumraswamy while reminding about federal structure in his tweets said, “It is an obligation on the part of the government to take care of the needs of those in dire situation. Instead, if you show indifference, people are bound to revolt.”

Also holding the Centre responsible for the delay in the supply of vaccine and pointing out that those wanting to take the first dose will have to wait due to the lack of availability, he said, 7 lakh doses have been supplied to Karnataka as against the request to provide 3 crore doses.

Karnataka on Wednesday had decided to temporarily suspend vaccination for the 18 to 44 age group from May 14 till further orders, and to utilise the complete supply of vaccines provided by the centre for vaccination of persons above 45 years of age and for vaccinating beneficiaries who were due for a second dose.

“Are those supporting as well as defending every stand and decision of the BJP and criticising even the just demands and suggestions of the Opposition parties ready to defend such an injustice being inflicted on Karnataka and Kannadigas?,” Kumaraswamy questioned, while asking will they own up responsibility for a large number of Kannadigas losing their lives due to shortage of oxygen.

Though the Centre gave only 120 MT of oxygen as against the court instruction of 1,200 MT, the Union Ministers and BJP MPs have fallen over to congratulate PM Narendra Modi and thank him for giving oxygen, he said, “Why should we express our gratitude when even our rightful share has been cut?”

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