'This is horse-trading': Cong slams BJP for MLA crisis

Congress MLAs from Karnataka speak to the media during their ongoing meeting with BJP leaders at a hotel in Mumbai. PTI

Amidst last-ditch efforts to save the Congress-JD(S) alliance government, the Congress slammed the BJP saying that it was ruining democracy and engaging in horse-trading.

Senior Congress leader and two-time MP Eknath Gaikwad said that it will not allow the BJP's game plan to succeed.

"The BJP government is ruining democracy by pressurizing the Congress-JD(S) MLAs from Karnataka to quit," he said.

"The BJP has forcibly detained them in a hotel. We condemn this move of the BJP. By doing so, the BJP is slaughtering democracy", said Gaikwad..

The senior Congressman said that he was unaware of the actual reason behind the resignation of these MLAs from Karnataka. "But they've been brought to Mumbai in a chartered plane as demanded by a senior BJP leader. They've been detained in this hotel. They are Karnataka MLAs. Why have they been brought to Mumbai? Despite the fact that they are Congress MLAs, we are not allowed to meet them. We cannot contact them over phone, as their cell phones are not with them too. While we are being stopped by the police from meeting them, the BJP leaders are being allowed to do so," Gaikwad alleged.

The BJP government is trying to repress and pressurize these MLAs. "Being a party which came to power with promises of protecting the holy cow, is now resorting to such undemocratic act of 'horse-trading'. The BJP used same dirty tactics in Goa in the recent past and now they're trying to do the same in Karnataka. We will not let the BJP succeed in accomplishing this," he said.

Senior Congress leader Bhai Jagtap said, "We simply want to know why these MLAs have been brought to Mumbai. We want to know if they have any complaints against the party. But we are not allowed to establish any kind of contact with them."

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