Ever since JDS-Congress alliance get an opportunity to form coalition government in Karnataka, after BJP failed to muster addition support of six MLAs, the BJP leadership almost everyday threatening they would topple the government. They have never hesitated to hide their `Operation Lotus’ mission to attract discontent Congress MLAs so that to form their own government.
However, for the last seven months BJP failed to executive their mission. But, now Congress is claiming BJP’s success in this regard stating that three of their MLAs are now in Mumbai with some BJP leaders.
Karnataka Water Resource minister D K Shivakumar, who is credited in keeping Congress MLAs together resisting several `provocative offers’ from BJP leadership all these months, is the person who declared that the BJP’s ‘Operation Lotus’ to topple the state’s coalition government was for real. He alleged that three Congress MLAs were camping in a hotel in Mumbai in the company of some BJP leaders.
The resourceful minister, known as `trouble shooter’ for Congress and on several occasions bailed out the party from one or other crisis, said that horse trading is going on in the state. “We are aware of what has transpired there and how much has been offered to them,” he said. Operation Lotus is a reference to the BJP allegedly luring several opposition MLAs to defect to ensure stability of its then-government headed by B S Yeddyurappa in Karnataka in 2008.
Furthermore, accused Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy of being “lenient” towards the BJP. “Our chief minister is bit lenient towards the BJP. By ‘lenient’, I mean he is not exposing the facts he knows. All the MLAs have conveyed to the chief minister about the ongoing conspiracies. They have also told Siddaramaiah about it. “The chief minister is adopting a policy of wait and watch. If I was in his place, I would have exposed it within 24 hours,” he added.
Shivakumar, however, exuded confidence that the BJP would not succeed in its attempt. “You have been saying that a ‘kranti’ (revolution) may happen after Makar Sankranti. Let us see. It is not so easy because there is already anti-defection law in place, but we are aware of what you are hinting at,” he said in an apparent reference to the opposition BJP in the state.