New Delhi: The issue of alleged horse trading in Karnataka echoed in Lok Sabha on Monday as the Congress cited a purported audio clip of B S Yeddyurappa to accuse the BJP of trying to lure ruling coalition MLAs, a charge firmly rejected by Union Minister Sadananda Gowda.
Congress members, including Sonia Gandhi, staged a walkout from the House over the issue but returned a few minutes later.
During the Zero Hour, Congress leader in the House Mallikarjun Kharge levelled allegations of horse trading against the BJP leadership and also mentioned Yeddyurappa's purported audio clip in which he is allegedly seeking to win over an MLA of the ruling Congress-JD(S) coalition in the state.
About the situation in Karnataka, Kharge, who is an MP from the state, claimed that there are references that the Speaker of the state assembly and even a judge "could be managed".
BJP members from the state, including Sadananda Gowda, objected to Kharge's remarks. Former prime minister and JD(S) leader H D Deve Gowda said that "things like 'Operation Kamala' should not happen in the country".
'Operation Kamala' is a reference to win over MLAs from rival parties into the BJP.
Refuting the allegations, Minister for Statistics and Programme Implementation Sadananda Gowda said there is already infighting between the Congress and the JD(S) in Karnataka and that both parties are doing "fake activities".
Gowda claimed that the two parties were doing such things to save the chief minister's chair.
JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy is the chief minister of Karnataka.
"All things uttered (here)... are false and far from truth," Gowda said.
For a brief time, Congress members trooped into the Well displaying placards with the message 'Operation Kamala. Death of Democracy' written on some of them. TDP members were also in the Well as they sought to raise issues related to Andhra Pradesh. Despite repeated requests from Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, they remained in the Well.
Earlier, the Question Hour was adjourned for nearly 50 minutes due to protests over alleged horse trading in Karnataka and other issues....