After hectic campaigning, CM goes on ‘rejuvenation trip’

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Bangalore: Days after the State went to the polls, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday left for treatment at an ayurvedic rejuvenation centre in Munnar, Kerala.

However, there are also reports stating that he is staying at a healthcare facility – Soukhya – in Whitefield, Bangalore.

With the model code of conduct (MCC) still in force, the entire government machinery has decided to go either on vacation or attend personal work.

On Monday, the Secretariat wore a deserted look. The rooms of ministers, usually bustling with visitors, were locked or closed. The bureaucrats, too, were missing in action, as most of them had left their offices by 3 pm.

Siddaramaiah briefly visited the Vidhana Soudha on Monday to sort out routine matters before his “rejuvenation” trip. He is expected to return only on April 26. Accompanying him are two of his Cabinet colleagues – H C Mahadevappa (Public Works Minister) and Mahadev Prasad (Co-operation Minister), besides Congress leader C M Ibrahim.

Opposition leader and BJP Lok Sabha candidate from Bangalore North D V Sadananda Gowda said Siddaramaiah’s reported statements of being “tired” due to the hectic campaigning for the Lok Sabha election were ridiculous. “Narendra Modi has attended 450-odd rallies across the nation and is still going strong. If the Congress chief minister is tired after attending 113 rallies, it is deplorable. Perhaps, it is time he vacated the seat,” he said.


Meanwhile, other State ministers, fluent in local languages and having influence in the neighbouring states, have been dispatched to campaign for the Congress. While Ramalinga Reddy has been assigned Secunderabad and other places in Andhra Pradesh, others have been sent to Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra where the polling is yet to begin.

Ministers who are still in the State have decided to stay away from the Secretariat, thanks to the MCC. Also, none of them has been authorised to use his/her official vehicles to travel across the State.

A minister said the MCC had put the government in a ‘holiday’ mode.

At the bureaucracy level, it is said several top officials had left for other parts of the country on official election duty. Those not part of the election duty roster have decided to go on leave.

Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukherjee, who had recently written to the Election Commission seeking relaxation of the MCC, has left for a conference in the Netherlands. He is likely to return on April 28.

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