What is source of money for operation lotus, asks Karnataka minister Priyank Kharge

08:48PM Sat 2 Sep, 2023

BENGALURU: On BJP national general secretary (organisation) B. L. Santhosh's claim that 40 to 45 MLAs of Congress are in touch with him and he can carry operation Lotus in one day, state minister for IT, BT and Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Priyank Kharge on Saturday questioned the source of money for carrying out the said operation.

Before spreading blatant lies, let Santhosh try to establish contact and win trust of his own party legislators, the Congress said.

Karnataka Congress on Friday had dubbed Santhosh's claim as the "joke of the century".

"I will give him a time of one month. Let him pull out at least four out of 45 MLAs, " Kharge said.

Rastriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) volunteers claim that they are not linked to any political party. But, they visit the BJP office and preach to BJP party leaders, Kharge said.

"Your own legislators are stating that Lingayat community leaders were not given tickets. They also claim that for Santosh's group in state BJP, Lingayats were sidelined. But, the strategy failed. Let Santhosh answer these allegations first and later he can talk about the Congress party, " Kharge stated.

Speaking at a meeting organised at the BJP party office in Bengaluru, Santhosh had said he can carry out "Operation Lotus (poach the opposition MLAs and form the government) in one day" as Congress leaders are in touch with him. However, he said, "We don't want it now. We are not making any attempt to form a government."

Santhosh had also said that no BJP leader is joining Congress. "Suppose if 10 leaders quit our party, we can always bring leaders who are capable and equal to them. People claim that the party would vanish in 2013 but despite the internal fights, we won 40 seats. In 2023, we won 60 seats. We have become more powerful as an opposition party, " he had said.