Karnataka minister says ‘we are MANAGING govt, not RUNNING it’ in viral audio clip, embarrasses BJP

The issue has now snowballed into a major controversy causing BIG embarrassment to Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai and his party BJP.

Karnataka minister says ‘we are MANAGING govt, not RUNNING it’ in viral audio clip, embarrasses BJP

Bengaluru: In a major embarrassment to the ruling BJP in Karnataka, a purported phone conversation between state’s Parliamentary Affairs Minister J C Madhuswamy and a Channapatna-based social worker Bhaskar in which he can be heard saying ''we are just managing the government and not running it'' has gone viral.

"We are not running a government here, we are just managing, pulling through for the next 7-8 months," Madhuswamy can be heard telling Bhaskar in response to his complaints against a cooperative bank, with respect to some farmers' issues in the viral audio clip.

The issue has now snowballed into a major controversy causing BIG embarrassment to Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai and his party BJP. Bommai, who on Tuesday confirmed that the comments made by one of his ministers are ''authentic but taken out of context.''

Damage control by CM Basavaraj Bommai

 

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai tried to do damage control by stating that the comments were made in a "different context". He also said that he will talk to other Ministers, who are upset about the remarks made by the Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister J C Madhuswamy and have openly expressed their displeasure against him.

Madhuswamy's comments have drawn criticism from some several Karnataka Ministers, with Horticulture Minister Munirathna even advising him to quit the Ministry. "He (Madhuswamy) had said in a different context. I will talk to him. The context was different, so there is no need to take it in the wrong sense. He had spoken specifically with respect to some cooperative-related issues. Things are fine, there is no problem," CM Bommai told reporters here.

When told that several of his cabinet colleagues are upset and are criticising Madhuswamy, the CM said, "I will talk to all of them....." 

What was the audio leak about?

 

In the purported phone conversation, while responding to the social worker's complaint, the Minister can be heard even expressing "helplessness" over Cooperation Minister S T Somashekar's "inaction". "I know these issues. I've brought this to the notice of Somashekhar. He is not taking action. What to do?" Madhuswamy can be heard saying.

Somashekar has hit out at Madhuswamy over his comments, saying, "He (Madhuswamy) feels that he is the only intelligent person, he has to remove it from his head first."

Minister Munirathna has said, Madhuswamy should resign from the Ministry immediately, before making such a statement. "He is part of the government and is participating in every matter at the cabinet, so he also has a share in it... Being in a responsible position and making such statements is not right, it is not befitting to his seniority," he said.

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