In an embarrassment to the ruling BJP government in Karnataka, the audio recording of a conversation of a cabinet minister has gone viral, where he says that the state is functioning without a government and is instead being stage managed.
However, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Tuesday attempted to downplay the issue by stating that the statement was given by the minister in a different context.
The audio clip containing the alleged conversation of Law Minister J.C. Madhuswamy was first highlighted by the Congress while taking jibes at the BJP government on the social media. Later, this incident threatened to turn into a crisis as the Horticulture Minister N. Munirathna asked Madhuswamy to submit his resignation.
Bommai said that there is no need for anyone to give a wrong picture of the statement made by Madhuswamy.
“The minister has stated it in a different context,” the Chief Minister added.
“I have spoken to him but there is no need for wrong portrayal. It was spoken three months ago in a programme related to the cooperative department. Everything is fine within the government. There is no crisis as such,” Bommai said.
The audio clip contains the alleged conversation between Madhuswamy and social worker Bhaskar where the latter talks about cooperative bank officials demanding Rs 1,300 for renewing Rs 50,000 loan availed by farmers.
Madhuswamy agrees with the charge and said that despite the matter being brought to the notice of Cooperatives Minister S.T. Somashekar, nothing much has changed on the ground.
“There is no functioning government, we are only managing things and waiting for eight months until the next Assembly elections,” Madhuswamy tells Bhaskar.
The Congress claimed on social media that it was a classic example of incompetence of the ruling BJP.
“The BJP government is functioning only as a corruption management service. There is no better evidence of the incompetence of the Bommai government and injustice to farmers”, it said.