Independent MLAs withdrew support due to bickering: Rao

Muralidhar Rao

BJP General Secretary Muralidhar Rao Tuesday said the withdrawal of support to the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka by two independent MLAs was an offshoot of internal bickerings among Congress leaders, mainly D K Shivakumar.

"The withdrawal of support by two independent MLAs is the result of internal bickerings among Congress leaders. Particularly, D K Shivakumar is a problem. He basically is precipitating the problem, but levelling charges against the BJP," he told PTI over the phone.

Rao, also in-charge of BJP affairs in Karnataka, stated this when asked to comment on the MLAs -R Shankar and H Nagesh -withdrawing support amid charges that BJP was engineering defections to topple the H D Kumaraswamy government. Attacking Shivakumar, Rao said he was the main culprit for the fresh political turbulence as he wanted to project himself as the 'true loyal Congress leader.'

Rao said it is wrong on the part of Congress to charge BJP with horse-trading to woo independent MLAs, who are free to withdraw support to the government as they are not bound by any political party. "Independent MLAs are not the private property of the Congress. You tell me where is the question of BJP'sindulgence in it. They are independent MLAs and they are free to support any government they want. How can one say that these two MLAs are bound by the Congress or the JDS?" he asked.

Asked whether the BJP expected more MLAs to quit or withdraw support to the government, Rao said, "It is far too hypothetical a question for now. I cannot immediately comment because I do not know the gravity of the situation in Karnataka," Replying to a query, Rao said the BJP neither wanted the coalition government to continue nor was it keen on bringing it down. "We are just waiting and watching the political developments," he said.

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Independent MLAs withdrew support due to bickering: Rao

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