A day after an audio clip triggered accusations that the BJP was trying to topple the HD Kumaraswamy government in Karnataka, the state Congress on Tuesday insisted that all legislators of the party and its partner Janata Dal Secular were with the government. They would, however, file a police complaint on the issue, the Congress said.
“On behalf of the KPCC (Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee), we are lodging a complaint to find out between whom the conversation took place… Conspiracies are being hatched, which must be investigated at the government level,” Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president Dinesh Gundu Rao told reporters in Bengaluru.
He asserted that no MLA from the Congress or Janata Dal Secular (JD-S) was ready to switch sides. “We all are together,” he said.
The audio clip which emerged on Monday, and was widely shared on social media, purportedly contained conversation between a confidante of BJP legislator B Sriramulu and a Dubai-based businessman discussing that at least 10 to 11 MLAs from the Congress and JD-S were ready to switch sides with specific names being mentioned.
“They have been offered Rs. 20 crore to Rs. 25 crore and ministership. By the second week it has to happen,” the confidante is heard purportedly saying in Hindi in the audio.
Sriramulu rejected the charges on Tuesday and questioned the authenticity of the audio clip.
The former Ballari lawmaker told reporters that his personal assistant never spoke in Hindi.
Meanwhile, Ballari-based mining baron and former BJP minister G Janardhana Reddy Tuesday visited the Jindal Naturecure Institute in the city, fanning conspiracy theories since two Congress MLAs were undergoing treatment there.
However, both the MLAs denied any contact between them and Reddy.
The ruling coalition had in the past too accused the BJP of attempting to poach its legislators, a charge denied by the party.