Soon after a Special Court trying cases of MPs and MLAs, convicted and sentenced Tamil Nadu Sports and Youth Welfare Minister P Balakrishna Reddy to three years imprisonment in a stone pelting case, he resigned from the post on Monday night.
In view of the conviction, the minister stands automatically disqualified of being an MLA as per the provisions governing statutory disqualification of the Representation of People Act.
The case related to a protest against illicit liquor at Hosur in 1998. Balakrishna Reddy submitted his resignation to chief minister K Palaniswami who forwarded it to Governor Banwarilal Purohit who has accepted it.
His portfolio of Youth Welfare and Sports Development has been handed over to School Education minister KA Sengottaiyan. A Raj Bhavan release said on Monday night, “Governor of Tamil Nadu has accepted the resignation of P Balakrishna Reddy, from the Council of Ministers.”
It added: “Based on the recommendation of the Chief Minister, the Portfolio of Youth Welfare and Sports Development has been allocated to KA Sengottaiyan, Minister for School Education who shall be re-designated as Minister for School Education, Youth Welfare and Sports Development.”
Reddy, 49, was the MLA from Hosur, and began his political career in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He had also served as the chairman of the Hosur municipality.
In 1998, over 150 villagers had gathered in front of the Bagalur police station and indulged in rioting, protesting against police inaction in removing illicit arrack units in the area. Reddy was part of the group which damaged public transport buses and set fire to police vehicles including a jeep.