Late-night flight flutter spooks Cong-JD(S)

A day after the Jarkiholi brothers’ threat seemed to die down, fear gripped alliance partners Congress and JD(S) on Thursday over the BJP’s ‘plans’ for toppling the coalition government.

There was intense speculation that the BJP had made arrangements to whisk away nearly two dozen Congress and JD(S) legislators to resorts in Mumbai and Pune in the neighbouring BJP-ruled Maharashtra on Thursday night.

While the BJP did not confirm any move to shifting MLAs, Yeddyurappa held a closed-door meeting at his Dollar’s Colony home with trusted aides.

Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy strongly warned BJP state president B S Yeddyurappa of consequences if he failed to “watch his words and act his age.”

His outburst is said to be result of the saffron party having approached JD(S) MLA Suresh Gowda (Nagamangala) and Congress’ C S Shivalli (Kundagol) on Wednesday night claiming that 18 others had been lured already.

Congress leaders attacked the BJP in the wake of the fear mongering. “We’re all right here. Nobody is going to Mumbai or anywhere else. No one from the BJP has contacted us,” Municipalities Minister Ramesh Jarkiholi told reporters, adding that there was no disgruntlement anymore.

“We’re alright. Our problems will be sorted out in a phased manner. Don’t hold us responsible to whatever is speculated in the media”

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Dinesh Gundu Rao said the party had no control over the legislators who are travelling in personal capacity.

“All that I can say is that no MLA is conspiring against the coalition,” Rao said.

Defamation suits

“Some TV channels are acting like the BJP’s mouthpiece and we will consider filing defamation suits if this continues,” Rao said.

The party’s working president Eshwar Khandre said defering of the Cabinet expansion, which he said had disheartened ministerial aspirants, would not result in any legislator falling for the BJP.

“This government is like a rock. Not a single MLA will quit,” the working president said.

Congress’ Bellary MLA B Nagendra, too, said he had not been contacted by the BJP. “We’re not going to Mumbai,” he said.

Asked about his ministerial aspiration, Nagendra said he would abide by the party’s decision. “I’ll be happy if any other MLA from Ballari besides myself gets into the Cabinet.”

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Late-night flight flutter spooks Cong-JD(S)

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