Karnataka illegally allocates compensation money to Ajeesh’s family: BJP

Ajeesh was trampled to death by a wild elephant known as Belur Makhna on February 10. File Photo.

Bengaluru: The BJP on Monday accused the Karnataka government of "illegally allocating" Rs 15 lakh to the kin of a Kerala man who was killed by the wild elephant Belu Makhna. The elephant was previously captured by the Karnataka forest department but later strayed into Wayanad in the neighbouring state.

With Congress leader Rahul Gandhi being the MP from Wayanad, the BJP's Karnataka unit president BY Vijayendra alleged that the Congress government in Karnataka was misusing taxpayers' money "to curry favour" with the former party president. It is utterly disgraceful, he said.

"Illegally allocating state fund of Rs 15 lakh to a deceased individual from Rahul Gandhi's Wayanad constituency, falsely blaming an elephant from Karnataka, is an appalling betrayal," Vijayendra, an MLA from Shikaripura, said on social media.

He said that amid crippling drought and hundreds of farmers committing suicides across Karnataka, the Congress government "shamelessly prioritised pleasing Rahul Gandhi over addressing the state's urgent needs". "CM Siddaramaiah and his cohorts must be held accountable for unethically looting Karnataka taxpayers' money and state treasury to cater to the Congress High Command's greed," the BJP state chief said.

Amidst the Congress party's struggle for survival, its ministers are sparing no effort in plundering every last rupee of the state's coffers, Vijayendra alleged.

On Sunday, Karnataka Forest Minister Eshwar Khandre said the state government has agreed to pay compensation to the Kerala man on par with the indemnity paid to the people of Karnataka killed by an elephant.

The tuskless male elephant was captured in Belur taluk of Hassan district on November 30, 2023, and translocated to the Bandipur Forest area. After more than two months, it was found that it had strayed into Wayanad district of Kerala.

On February 10, the elephant killed Panachiyil Ajeesh, a tractor driver, at Padamala near Mananthavady. Following this, elected representatives and the Government of Kerala had requested the Karnataka government to be largehearted and pay compensation for that case, the minister's office said.

he statement said Khandre took up the matter of payment of compensation with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Sunday. "The chief minister agreed to pay compensation to the family of Ajeesh on par with any person of Karnataka," the statement read.
(With PTI inputs)

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