In the midst of reports that 13 Karnataka dissident MLAs had been whisked away on Saturday to undisclosed locations from a Goa hotel, the BJP alleged that Janata Dal (S) leader and former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy and the Congress had a role in the act.
Karnataka Excise Minister M.P. Renukacharya, who had led the revolt of 19 legislators against Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, complained that the legislators were forcibly taken away at the behest of Congress and Janata Dal (S) leaders, minutes after they returned to the party fold, under police custody.
“More than 100 goons forcibly took away 13 MLAs, including five independent legislators. The BJP high command and Yeddyurappa had agreed to meet all their demands and they were ready to support the party,” he told Hindustan Times on the phone from Goa.
Renukacharya said he had been offered the post of deputy chief minister and every rebel legislator was willing to leave for Bangalore. The goons also took away his mobile phone, he added.
Karnataka Tourism Minister G. Janardhan Reddy had been leading a group of emissaries to hold discussions with the rebel camp in the Goa hotel. The rebels were supposedly moved out soon after he and two other leaders left the hotel.
BJP National Spokesperson Ramnath Kovind said: “When the MLAs were about to move to Bangalore from the hotel in Goa after they had agreed to back the government, JD(S) leader H.D. Kumaraswami, some Congress leaders and plainclothes policemen arrived at the hotel and tried to take them away by force.”
Governor H.R. Bharadwaj had asked the chief minister to prove majority after 19 MLAs – 14 BJP and five independent legislators – had submitted letters to him seeking withdrawal of their support to the BJP government on or before October 12.