All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen President Asaduddin Owaisi accused the Congress candidate in Telangana’s Nirmal constituency of attempting to bribe him by offering Rs 25 lakh to cancel his rally in support of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi, NDTV reported on Tuesday. The three-time parliamentarian claimed he had a recording of the conversation between a member of his party and the Congress candidate A Maheshwar Reddy.

“Now when this jalsa [meeting] is happening, the Congress people tried to buy Asaduddin Owaisi,” Owaisi said at a rally in Nirmal on Monday night. “Maheshwar [Reddy] phoned a MIM leader telling him to stop Owaisi saheb, [and] will give Rs 25 lakh party fund. What do you call such a party that is doing such a thing?”

Reddy asked Owaisi to back his allegation with evidence and said he would quit politics if the charge against him was proved to be true, PTI reported. “Why should somebody stop someone’s rally?” the Congress leader asked. “Owaisi has already started campaigning for TRS party and now this man says that he is being stopped with an offer of Rs 25 lakh. Why somebody will offer him Rs 25 lakh and why he will stop?”

Though there is no formal alliance between Owaisi’s party and the Telangana Rashtra Samithi, the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen has not fielded a candidate in Nirmal for the December 7 elections. It organised the meeting in support of the ruling party’s candidate.