Kumaraswamy asserts Yeddyurappa tried to buy silence over graft

June 18th, 2011 - 8:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, June 18 (IANS) Asserting that Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa had tried to “buy” his silence over graft charges, Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) leader H.D. Kumaraswamy Saturday accepted Yeddyurappa’s challenge to take an oath in the name of god and stick to his claim.

“I am ready to go to Dharmasthala Sunday and take the oath in the name of Lord Manjunatha (Hindu god) but Yeddyurappa will have to clarify whether he will come there alone or with the emissary through whom he tried to negotiate a deal with me,” Kumaraswamy told reporters.

He was responding to an “open letter” that Yeddyurappa published as advertisement in several Karantaka dailies Saturday contending that Kumaraswamy had made the claim with “malicious intentions”.

Accusing Kumaraswamy of indulging in “hit and turn tactics of making serious allegations and running away from the scene like a coward”, Yeddyurappa said: “Let us prove our truthfulness in the divine presence of Lord Manjunatha Swamy of Dharmasthala.”

The Dharmasthala temple, about 300 km from Bangalore on the west coast, is a famous pilgrim centre of Hindus. It is common among a section of people in Karnataka to challenge others to take oath in the name of the presiding deity of the temple to prove one’s innocence or charges and claims.

In the advertisement, carried on front pages by many dailies, Yeddyurappa accused Kumaraswamy of “trying to hurt me by levelling absolutely baseless allegations against me”.

“I, for one, am cent percent sure and confident that all these allegations are made with malicious intentions,” Yeddyurappa said.

Kumaraswamy had said Wednesday that Yeddyurappa had over the last four months offered through emissaries “any amount of money to build our party and to do whatever work I wanted to in return for keeping quiet over corruption he is involved in”.

The JD-S leader, a former Karnataka chief minister and son of former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda, also said Saturday that there was no change in his stand of releasing more documents against Yeddyurappa in New Delhi on June 22. He has chosen the day as two days later BJP will launch a nation-wide campaign against corruption in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre.

The Congress also joined the row Saturday by ridiculing Yeddyurappa for his “take the oath before gods” stand and “wasting public money for advertisements to defend himself”.

“There is no place for these things in a democracy. If Yeddyurappa believes the charges are false he should file a defamation case against Kumaraswamy,” Leader of Opposition in the assembly Siddaramaiah told reporters in Mysore, about 130 km from Bangalore.

Yeddyurappa is away in Kottakkal in neighbouring Kerala for ayurvedic treatment and rest.

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