The Congress on Saturday accused the Bharatiya Janata Party’s “gang of three” – a reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, party chief Amit Shah and Karnataka chief BS Yeddyurappa – of attempting to “topple the democratically elected government” in Karnataka.
“BJP’s gang of three is trying to topple the Karnataka government,” Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged at a press conference in New Delhi. “This gang of PM Modi, Amit Shah and Yeddyurappa is using the Karnataka governor as a puppet to topple the elected government of the state.”
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy had released two audio clips on Friday, accusing Yeddyurappa of trying to poach a Janata Dal (Secular) legislator by offering money. Yeddyurappa called the audio clips “fake and baseless”. Kumaraswamy also accused Modi of “systemically demolishing this country’s democracy” and misleading people.
In the tape, someone is heard claiming that Supreme Court judges would be approached to decide the cases of MLAs who defect to the ruling party. The Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) allege that it is Yeddyurappa.
Surjewala questioned in what capacity the assurance had been made. “Have Narendra Modi and Amit Shah given them such assurances?” he asked. “Has the SC become a ‘jebi dukaan’ of BJP?”
Congress General Secretary KC Venugopal, who is the party leader in charge of Karnataka, alleged that Yeddyurappa offered Rs 10 crore to at least 18 MLAs of the ruling coalition. “Therefore it comes at the rate of around Rs 200 crore,” Venugopal said. “He is offering 12 MLAs minister post, six were offered chairman posts in different boards.”
The Congress leaders questioned how the saffron party was planning to pay the legislators.
“Entire country is shocked by hearing the news from Karnataka yesterday,” Venugopal said. “Karnataka CM released audio clippings of deliberation of Yeddyurappa with one of the brother of JD(S) MLA revealing dirty politics of Modi ji [and] Amit Shah to destabilise the Karnataka government.”