Mangaluru: Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy not only stood by his claims of the BJP trying to topple his government, but also insisted, a day after he produced an audio tape allegedly of state BJP chief, B S Yeddyurappa luring his party MLA, that the saffron party had not given up its efforts and had contacted yet another legislator on Saturday.
“This morning one of our MLAs received a call and was offered money by the BJP. The MLA called to inform me about this. The BJP is still continuing its effort to lure our MLAs even after the audio was released yesterday," Mr Kumaraswamy told reporters during his visit to the Sri Kshetra Dharmasthala on Saturday.
While he refused to reveal the name of MLA who was contacted, he said BJP leaders like Ashwathnarayan and Yogeshwar were playing a key role in getting to the legislators of the ruling parties in the state.
Accusing the BJP leaders of trying to create confusion by claiming that the government did not have enough numbers to survive, he said, “They are trying to disturb the government. But I am sure they will not succeed.”
On Speaker Ramesh Kumar declaring that the voice on the audio tape was not that of Mr Yeddyurappa, Mr Kumaraswamy said, “Ramesh Kumar said there was a need to investigate for the truth to emerge. Let’s see what the Speaker says during the legislature session. I am not in a hurry.” Standing firmly by his allegation against the BJP chief, he declared he would quit politics if it was proved that the voice on the audio tape was not his. “Standing here at this holy place, I would like to say that if it is proved that the cassette released on Friday is not that of Mr. Yeddyurappa and his voice was mimicked by someone else at my behest then he (Yeddyurappa) does not need to retire from politics, I will,” he said.
As for the BJP's allegations that he had used his expertise in film-making to produce a fake audio tape, he shot back, “It’s true that I am basically a film producer, but there is lot of difference between this and film production. Leaders of Mr. Yeddyurappa’s party had tried something like this in Hyderabad to make corruption charges against me in 2006. But I don't do that. Anyone with some basic sense can easily identify the voice in this audio tape.”
Insisting that Mr Yeddyurappa had tried to lure his party MLA, he said, “He held the discussion after leaving his gunman 5 kms away. What was the need to have a discussion at midnight with lights switched off at the circuit house? The conversation was recorded by our party workers as they were fed up with this daily harassment.”
On BJP leader, Aravinda Limbavali's threat to release an audio tape of him allegedly demanding a Rs 25 crore bribe, Mr Kumaraswamy said he and other BJP leaders were free to release any audio or video they had against him.
“One of our leaders came to me with about 50 supporters and I spoke to them. It was not a closed door meeting. Somebody could have recorded it,” he said....