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Congress laps up new audio clip of CM to target Amit Shah

An audio clip is causing trouble for BS Yediyurappa as it was leaked on Saturday in which Yediyurappa is heard telling a group of party leaders in Hubballi that he was pained by the recent remarks of sections of party leaders The BJP regime in the...

, ET Bureau|
Nov 04, 2019, 11.09 AM IST
Bengaluru: Fresh trouble has surfaced for Karnataka chief minister BS Yediyurappa and the 15 disqualified MLAs as the Congress is set to provide evidence to the Supreme Court on Monday charging the BJP with toppling the previous JD(S)- Congress regime by engineering defections.

An audio clip was leaked on Saturday in which Yediyurappa is heard telling a group of party leaders in Hubballi last week that he was pained by the recent remarks of sections of party leaders. The BJP regime in the state was possible due to the sacrifice of 17 “disqualified” MLAs, and blessing of the national leadership.

He criticises the party leaders of not extending enough support to “save” the BJP government. Yediyurappa remarks that the MLAs were put up in a Mumbai hotel for over two months as per the instructions of the BJP’s central leadership and everything was supervised by the Delhi bosses.

While the chief minister has not denied his remarks, and instead, has sought to explain away his utterances, BJP state president Nalin Kumar Kateel accused the Congress of indulging in a political rhetoric using a “fake audio.”

The Congress is on the offensive as it believes it has got a new piece of evidence to further drag the case in the Supreme Court. The disqualified lawmakers — 15 from the Congress and 3 from the JD(S) — have moved the apex court challenging the speaker’s order disqualifying them and barring from contesting polls till 2023 when the term of the current Assembly expires.

The petitioners are expecting a verdict before November 11, when the Election Commission will issue a notification for the December 5 bypolls. The disqualified lawmakers are keeping their fingers crossed as they are hopeful a favourable verdict will help them contest the polls. That is exactly what the Congress does not want to happen; its attempts are directed at dragging the court case as much as possible so that a verdict is not in place by November 11, and, as a consequence, the disqualified lawmakers are not able to contest.

JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy who had recently made statements in favour of Yediyurappa, too has come down heavily on the government after the audio. “We have decided to submit the content before the court,” Kumaraswamy said.

The CM has been attempting to contain the damage within the party denying mention of Shah’s name. “MLAs resigned for their own reasons and I have nothing to do with those resignations. I never said that the party president engineered the resignation. What has Amit Shah got to do with MLAs staying in Mumbai?” he retorted on Sunday.

The Congress has demanded the dismissal of Karnataka government and resignation of Union home minister Amit Shah. “The facts and circumstances clearly indicate that BS Yediyurappa and Amit Shah, who engineered defections have no legal and moral right to continue in office as the CM and Union home minister. Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president Dinesh Gundu Rao has said that the party will hold a protest in district headquarters on Monday.

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