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Karnataka govt upset over not being invited for NASSCOM event attended by PM Modi and Angela Merkel

Bengaluru(PTI): Upset over Chief Minister Siddaramaiah not being invited for a NASSCOM event attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Bengaluru, Karnataka Government on Wednesday said it had sent a “bad message” and virtually blamed the PMO for it.

Modi and Merkel

“Not inviting the Chief Minister for the programme (Nasscom event) – it has sent a bad message. We are all upset with that,” State Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister T B Jayachandra told reporters on the sidelines of the cabinet meeting.

Siddaramaiah accompanied Modi and Merkel in their visit to the facility of German automotive major Bosch but he stayed away from the Indo-German Summit organised by National Association of Software and Services Companies jointly with the German Fraunhofer Institute in Bengaluru on Tuesday.

According to the Chief Minister’s office, Siddaramaiah did not get an official invitation either from NASSCOM or Prime Minister’s Office.

Questioning Modi’s often-repeated statements about strengthening federal structure, Jayachandra said, “He always speaks of strengthening the federal structure and sundry other things, but ultimately what is he doing? Is he taking all the parties together?”

According to the protocol, the participation of Chief Minister is necessary and it is in the “norms” that the PMO invites him for any event, Jayachandra said.

“Shouldn’t the PMO inform the state about the visit of the Prime Minister? The Chief Minister necessarily has to be the guest also,” he said.

Asked whether the state government would write a letter to the Prime Minister on the issue, he said the ministers had impressed upon the Chief Minister to convey it to the PMO.

“We have impressed upon the Chief Minister also that it should be made known to the PMO, and let us see what action the Chief Minister takes,” he said. NASSCOM has not reacted to the issue.

Congress on Wednesday targeted Modi for not inviting Siddaramaiah, asking, “Is this Cooperative Federalism which PM talks about? CM Karnataka not invited in NASSCOM function attended by PM and German Chancellor in Bangalore. Is this Cooperative Federalism which PM talks about? Would CM Gujarat also have not been invited if this function was in Gujarat?” party General Secretary Digvijaya Singh said on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Singh is General Secretary in charge of party affairs in Karnataka. Modi had taken part along with the German Chancellor at the meet, ‘Indo-German Summit 2015: Digitizing Tomorrow Together’, organised here as part of the three-day state visit to India by Merkel.

The Prime Minister also hosted a special lunch for Merkel with leading Indian CEOs at the summit which was attended by several industry biggies, including Wipro Chairman Azim Premji, Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group Kumar Mangalam Birla, Tata Consultancy Services CEO N Chandrasekaran, ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar and L&T Chief A M Naik.

Siddaramaiah had received and seen off the Prime Minister at the HAL airport in Bengaluru and exchanged greetings and pleasantries.