The Janata Dal (secular) on Thursday released video clips to back their charge that the ruling BJP in Karnataka was carrying out an exercise called Operation Kamal to lure MLAs by offering crores of rupees and ministerial berths.
JD(S) president HD Kumaraswamy, who released a CD containing two clips, said party MLA SR Sriniwas was offered R20-30 crore by BJP MLA Suresh Gowda to resign from the assembly and defect to the BJP.
“Sriniwas was told he can get R15 crore in half-an-hour and the rest would be arranged after discussions with Home Minister R Ashok,” Kumaraswamy said.
The CD contained a clip showing Sriniwas speaking on a hands-free mobile phone to another person was dentified by the JD(S) as the BJP’s Suresh Gowda.
The CD also contained an interaction between Gowda and Sriniwas — shot from a window of a room in Tumkur city, 160 km from Bangalore. Though the visuals showed both the MLAs, the sound quality of the conversation that took place in the room was not good.
“This is absolute proof that Operation Kamal is on. We will give it to the Governor and ask for President’s Rule in the state to save it,” Kumaraswamy said.
Gowda countered the JD(S) claim saying he was invited by Sriniwas for the discussion and that he too had recorded the meeting. Sriniwas was reportedly told in one of the clippings that all his election expenses would be covered and he would be paid any amount of money he wanted to quit the assembly.
Two Congress MLAs, SV Ramachandra and M Narayanswamy, and JD(S) legislator MC Ashwath, have already resigned from the assembly, allegedly after being lured by the BJP.