Planning Minister Munirathna on Monday asked his Cabinet colleague JC Madhuswamy (JCM) to resign if he wants to criticize the functioning of the BJP government.
Munirathna was referring to a viral phone conversation in which Madhuswamy, the Minister of Justice, is allegedly overheard saying that there is no government, only leadership.
“If there is no government and the only management is in place, (Madhuswamy) should step down as minister and then make such statements,” Munirathna said. “He is part of the government. He participates in Cabinet meetings. Being in a position of responsibility, it’s wrong to talk like that. Let him resign as minister and then speak,” he said.
Last week, Cooperation Minister ST Somashekhar criticized Madhuswamy.
Read also | Madhuswamy jibe: Somashekhar says government is working well
However, CN Higher Education Minister Ashwath Narayan came to Madhuswamy’s rescue. “There is no way Madhuswamy would make such a statement. Someone from the opposition must have created it,” he said.
The audio clip was used by Congress to attack the BJP government.
Former Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa said on Monday that the BJP would fight next year’s Assembly elections under “collective leadership” and win 140 seats.
“We will come back with a full majority. We will fight the election under collective leadership. We will definitely win more than 140 seats,” Yediyurappa said at the BJP-organized “Amruta Bharatige Karunada Jatre” event.
The Lingayat strongman said he would visit the state to mobilize support for the BJP. “Congress has harassed Ambedkar enough. I will go statewide and educate people about this. I will also highlight our development work and tour the state,” he said.
Appreciating Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai for his work, Yediyurappa said the government has ensured social justice for all classes of society.
“Congress acts as if it has come to power. But, they will face a suffocating situation,” Yediyurappa said.