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Congress MLAs who quit to join BJP dismiss Siddaramaiah’s claims of deserting saffron camp

“I have the contacts of 16 Congress MLAs and I will bring all of them if the high command asks me to go ahead,” BJP leader Ramesh Jarkiholi said.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
Updated: January 27, 2022 3:24:18 pm
Saddiaramaiah, Karnataka, BJP, Congress, Talibani, BJP leaders Talibani, RSS, RSS taliban, Ambedkar, Indian express, Indian express news, Current Affairs, Karnataka newsFormer Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah. (File)

Congress MLAs, who switched sides to join the BJP and became ministers, dismissed Karnataka Congress leader Siddaramaiah and party president D K Shivakumar’s assertion that over a dozen BJP MLAs are ready to switch over to Congress.

Clarifying their stand, cabinet ministers Munirathna Naidu, K Sudhakar and S T Somashekhar said they will never go back to Congress. “My friends and I will never go back to the Congress party. If we go to the Congress party, Siddaramaiah will not be there,” Munirathna said.

Siddaramaiah had earlier said that a few BJP and JD(S) leaders want to join Congress and are in touch with him.

Ramesh Jarkiholi, who had supported BJP in migrating MLAs from Congress and JD(S) to BJP, also slammed Siddaramaiah and said, “I have the contacts of 16 Congress MLAs and I will bring all of them if the high command asks me to go ahead.”

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K Sudhakar, who came from Congress and is now the state Health Minister, said, “Let the Congress first release the list of BJP MLAs who will join them. They (Congress) are giving out such statements ahead of the 2023 election to get publicity.”

Minister S T Somashekar also dismissed Siddaramaiah’s statement and said, “Congress leaders do not have any other work to do. They simply indulge in speculations but we in the BJP have work to do. Congress should first name the MLAs who want to switch over or allow us (BJP) to develop the state.”

Siddaramaiah had also said that legislators from other parties who want to join Congress have to accept the party’s leadership and ideology. “If they agree, we will welcome them,” he said while adding that he would not reveal the names at the moment.

Amid speculations, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said insecurity is haunting Siddaramaiah as he thinks Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president D K Shivakumar has overtaken him. “The tussle between these two will force many in Congress to desert the party in the coming days. There is no question of any one from BJP joining Congress,” Bommai said.

Bommai also took a dig at Shivakumar and said, “First he (Shivakumar) had claimed that many BJP MLAs are in contact with him and they are about to join him. Now, he is claiming that they would join when the elections approach. It means his earlier statement was a lie,” Bommai said.

He added, “There is no reply from Congress on who are the MLAs who are set to desert BJP. There is an internal tussle within Congress.”

Bommai further targeted Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar and said that both the Congress leaders are issuing statements competing with each other. “There is no truth in what they are saying,” Bommai said.

 

When asked whether any Congress MLA is in touch with BJP, Bommai said, “I never said anything like that.”

Replying to a question about former Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s statement that nobody could form a government without JDS’s support after the election, Bommai said, “It has always been his (Kumaraswamy) wish. He naturally feels that a hung mandate would give him the freedom.”

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