Bangalore, September 12: The ongoing tussle over the post of managing director (MD) of the Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF) took an ugly turn on Tuesday with one of the board directors allegedly manhandling A S Premnath, the in-charge MD of the Federation, at the main office.
Premnath was allegedly manhandled by Lingesh Kumar, Janata Dal (Secular) leader and director of Bangalore Urban and Rural Milk Producers’ Co-operative Union, and his supporters, for convening a board meeting to take action against M N Venkataram who had refused to vacate the MD’s post despite being transferred recently in the wake of alleged irregularities in the purchase of cotton seed cakes.
Those present at the spot intervened and prevented the situation from going out of control. Premnath is said to have lodged a complaint at the Adugodi police station.
Meanwhile, the KMF board decided to suspend Venkataram from the post of director for defying its earlier order transferring him. It also decided that Premnath will continue as the in-charge managing director.
The board’s decision has come a day after Venkataram issued an order suspending Premnath from the in-charge managing director’s post.
But Venkataram stuck to his position and refused to accept the board’s decision. It is said that he even refused to receive his suspension order.
As a result, the KMF board has decided to send the order through the post. “I am still the managing director. The board meeting was illegal as it was held against the State government’s decision,” Venkataram stated. The KMF board, had in its meeting held on September 5, decided to remove Venka¬taram in the wake of the government ordering a probe into the purchase of cotton seed cakes.
The board had appointed Premnath the new managing director. But Venkataram refused to vacate the post. So, Premnath had him suspended.
The Animal Husbandry department had termed Tuesday’s board meeting unwarranted and directed the KMF not to hold the meeting.
“The KMF board has decided to suspend Venkataram for not obeying its earlier decision to transfer him. Venkataram has been facing serious charges. The board also decided that I should continue as in-charge managing director,” Premnath said.