Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah wants Rs 100 crore from PM Narendra Modi for making false charges

Bengaluru: The political campaign in Karnataka has turned personal and ugly. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, keen to fend off the charges of personal corruption that have been leveled against him, has served on PM Modi, BJP chief Amit Shah and BS Yeddyurappa a legal notice.

In the notice, he has asked the BJP leaders to apologise unconditionally for ‘‘intentionally and maliciously” making “false and defamatory statements against him”. Otherwise, they will face a defamation suit for Rs 100 cr.

The CM has especially taken umbrage at the vitriolic campaign against him and PM Modi’s jibes like “Sidda-rupaiya government”, “10 per cent sarkar” and that there is “ease of doing murders” in Karnataka, which have been cited in the legal notice. (‘‘We want to encourage the ease of doing business, the Congress has initiated the culture of ease of doing murder,” the PM had said).

“…You are called upon to cease and desist from making such statements forthwith and give an unconditional public apology immediately through electronic, print and social media etc. in which the statements and advertisements have appeared,” says the notice.

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The notice specifies the dates and the rallies where PM Modi and others made the allegedly defamatory remarks. The notice also talks of Siddaramaiah’s controversial diamond-studded Hublot watch, which is at the core of the Karnataka election discourse. His lawyer has said, “My client had received the watch from his friend as a gift. He has paid the tax on it and on the floor of the Karnataka Assembly declared the source of the gift; he even handed it over to the Hon’ble Speaker asking him to treat the same as an asset of the state.”

The legal notice also mentions the advertisements run by the Modi government and alleges that these ads malign Siddaramaiah’s image. The Congress has also lodged a complaint again-st PM Modi with the Election Commission. It says he had violated the model code of conduct by promising to resolve the Mahadayi river water sharing issue with Goa.

The complaint said Modi misused his position to garner votes for the BJP and intimidated voters — especially those living around the Mahadayi river — to vote for his party.


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