Udayavni Special

Case of ‘missing’ Congress MLA: Shrimant Patil in hospital, says will return to K’taka after recovery


PTI, Jul 19, 2019, 9:29 AM IST

New Delhi: Amid the ongoing political drama in Karnataka, yet another Congress MLA from the state arrived in Mumbai on Thursday and was hospitalised after complaining of chest pain. Shrimant Patil, legislator from Kagwad Assembly segment in Belgaum district, said he would return after he recovers.

“I will return to Bengaluru once I recover,” Patil said after he was transferred from a private hospital where he was first admitted to a public hospital in south Mumbai. “I went to Chennai for some personal work and felt chest pain, so I visited a hospital and on medical advice, I came to Mumbai and got myself admitted here.”

Patil’s disappearing act from Karnataka and his sudden appearance in Mumbai came on a day the state Assembly was rocked during a trust vote. The Congress alleged that Patil, who had gone incommunicado, had been “kidnapped” as part of efforts to destabliise the coalition government.

The Congress MLAs said the lawmakers were living in fear and Patil was kidnapped, kept in a room, taken by a special flight to Mumbai and admitted to a hospital.

Senior minister DK Shivakumar said they would produce documents to show that Patil was forcibly admitted to the hospital to skip the trust vote.

Meanwhile, senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge claimed the BJP had brought Patil to Mumbai in its attempt to topple the Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka. Police was not allowing anyone to meet Patil, Kharge said.

According to sources, 15 rebel MLAs from the Congress and the Janat Dal (Secular) are already camping at a luxury hotel in Mumbai. “The MLA (Patil) came here Thursday. He was admitted to a private hospital here initially, but was taken to (government-run) St George hospital later,” they said.

Congress general secretary Kharge, who hails from Karnataka, accused Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis of helping Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah in ensuring that the Karnataka government collapsed. Kharge also accused the BJP of facilitating the stay of other rebel MLAs — he put their number at 12 — at the Mumbai hotel.

Addressing a meeting of Congress workers following the appointment of Balasaheb Thorat as Maharashtra unit chief, Kharge said Patil had been with him on Wednesday night.

“The MLA has come here, complaining of pain in the heart. There are many heart specialists in Karnataka, where free treatment is possible. Karnataka has a hospital which is the best after AIIMS (in Delhi). But he (Patil) has come to a Mumbai hospital here ignoring that Karnataka hospital,” said Kharge.

“Who has brought him here? These things show Modi sahab, Shah sahab trying to bring dictatorship here replacing democracy and Fadnavis Sahab is helping them,” Kharge alleged, adding that the BJP was “frustrated” as it fell short of forming the government in Karnataka after Assembly polls in 2018.

“Now since Modi ji has retained power, they are again trying to bring the Karnataka government down. Therefore, they have brought the MLAs here,” he alleged, adding that the BJP-led central government was using “every tool possible” to trigger the collapse of the Kumaraswamy government.

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