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Thursday, May 19, 2022

Karnataka: BJP MLA claims he was offered CM’s post for Rs 2,500 crore; Bommai ducks questions, Cong seeks probe

The statement comes after rumours of a rejig in the Karnataka Cabinet were doing the rounds.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
Updated: May 7, 2022 3:32:40 pm
Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal during the speech on Thursday. (Screengrab)

Days after Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal claimed that people from Delhi had approached him to offer him the Chief Minister’s post in return of Rs 2,500 crore, the Congress party in Karnataka demanded a probe, while CM Basavaraj Bommai denied to comment on the matter.

The statement comes after rumours of a rejig in the Karnataka Cabinet were doing the rounds.

“You will meet many thieves in politics who will offer you tickets, take you to Delhi, make you meet Sonia Gandhi, JP Nadda. Some people had come from Delhi and said that they would make me the Chief Minister if I arranged Rs 2,500 crore. Do they know how much is Rs 2,500 crore and where  to keep it, in a room or a godown,” former Union Minister and BJP MLA Yatnal had said on Thursday.

He added that these people had also said that they would take him to JP Nadda and Amit Shah’s residences.

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While Bommai refused to answer questions regarding it on Friday and Saturday, state Congress chief D K Shivakumar demanded a national-level discussion over it and a probe.

“There is a price fixed by the present BJP government in Karnataka for police sub-inspectors and assistant professors. There are a lot of corruption allegations. Yatnal is a BJP MLA and is expected to get a good portfolio in the near future. His statements must be taken seriously,” he added.

Leader of Opposition Siddaramaiah on Saturday demanded that an investigation be ordered as the allegations were “serious.” He said: “If an investigation is not conducted, it only implies that Basavaraj Bommai has accepted to have paid crores of rupees to become the CM. He will not be able to continue as the CM on moral grounds. If we look at what Yatnal said, it shows that he has a lot of data on BJP’s corruption. He should be called for investigation to extract information and reveal the truth.”

“People had thought it was the Legislature Party that elects the CM in the BJP. Now Yatnal has revealed that the CM chair is a payment seat and bought through auction. There are also allegations that this seat auction is not just limited to the CM position but also to various ministerial berths. There should also be an investigation on how much money is being paid by defected candidates to the BJP leadership,” he added.

Alleging that there is a link to Yatnal’s allegation and the scams carried out by the BJP, like extorting 40% commission from contractors, PSI scam, assistant professor recruitment and health dept scams, he said, “All these have to be investigated. Those who have made payments to be CM and ministers have entered into commission business. This has deprived many of their bright future. Yatnal’s allegations are not new. He has previously made allegations on CM and ministers over various scams. Why is their high command silent? Does this mean their approval?”

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