BENGALURU: With the appointment of Anand Singh as forest, ecology and environment minister drawing flak from various quarters, Karnataka chief minister BS Yediyurappa met senior ministers and discussed the possibility of changing the Vijayanagara MLAs’s portfolio.
He was handed charge of forests, ecology and environment despite facing over a dozen cases under the Forests Act — a clear conflict of interest. He also faces illegal mining cases.
Social media users, Congress slam BSY
The Congress hit out at Yediyurappa for appointing Singh, a businessman with mining interests, as forest minister. “Forest minister facing 15 cases under Forest act. @BSYBJP allotting forest ministry to Anand Singh is illegal since he has over dozen cases pending against him, including serious offenses under Karnataka Forest Act. How can people charged with serious offences head the ministry?” Karnataka Congress tweeted.
Singh’s appointment also caused a stir on social media with petitions being launched against the appointment.
On Wednesday, Singh told TOI he hadn’t asked for the portfolio and the CM, who had given him this responsibility, was free to withdraw it.
Miner on wildlife board
Meanwhile, the recent appointment of Dinesh Singhi, who owns Bharat Mines and Minerals, Ballari, to the Karnataka State Wildlife Board also led to a controversy with questions being raised in wildlife circles about the conflict of interest.
The government notification, dated January 18, 2020, says Dinesh and three others — Naveen JS, Alok Vishwanath and Chethana B — had been appointed non-government members of the board. Singhi’s appointment was decried by wildlife enthusiasts