Coffee Politics, Will Resort Politics return to Karnataka?

Coffee Politics: The question that is making the rounds of the political echelons in Karnataka is whether the state would see another episode of resort politics in the state after the state’s chief minister HD Kumaraswamy accused the BJP of engaging in horse trading to topple his government.

In a charged up political environment, that has been ensuing ever since the coming to power in May following a resort drama where both the Janta Dal (Secular) and Congress kept their MLAs confined for days in resorts on the pretext of protecting them from the prying eyes of the BJP.

And that resort apparently could see a rerun as the chief minister told the media: “Whether they keep the resorts or shanties ready, I am ready for everything,” in reference to his allegations of the BJP trying to win over his party and Congress MLAs and topple his government. He also warned the BJP of possible legal action that he could take against “certain kingpins’ engaged in the attempts to bribe the MLAs.

There have been reports in the media too that the BJP has kept some resorts ready to keep some Congress and JD(S) MLAs who would be voting against the Kumaraswamy government –in quite the same tactic that Kumaraswamy himself had used not many months ago.

In what was a direct allegation against the BJP, Kumaraswamy said: Presently payments are being made in advance. I won’t say more now. You will get to know about it later.

He even went on to say that he was aware where the money is being collected for the bribes (by the BJP) and the people involved in collecting the money.

There are rumours that the plot to topple the JD(S) –Congress government in Karnataka was first detected about a week ago by the state intelligence while the agency was tracking routine hawala calls. According to multiple sources, sleuths of the state intelligence department first became aware of a plot while monitoring the calls of a former rowdy-sheeter – who is also a defeated BJP candidate. The sleuths tracked calls by the rowdy-sheeter to multiple hawala agents where talks about mobilizing funds of about Rs 300 crore was overheard.

The rowdy-sheeter reportedly said that the money would be used for ‘Operation Lotus’ – which in security parlance is known as attempts to establish a BJP government when he was asked about the possible use off the money by one of the hawala agents.  The sleuths reportedly also came to know that certain resorts are being kept ready for Congress and JD(S) MLAs.

Trying to put up a brave face however, Kumaraswamy reiterated that such an attempt to topple his government was a futile exercise and hence he is not worried at all.

All of the charges have however been refuted by the BJP.
“We don’t have such intentions and do not want to get into such activities. We will think of forming the government only if it collapses on its own due to internal strife,” said former deputy chief minister R Ashok.

Credit: The Coffee Politics Article is contributed by Debdutta Gosh, A former journalist and now a full-time Freelance Writer.

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