DK Shivakumar alleged that the BJP was blackmailing NR Santosh over a disk with compromising content.

DK Shivakumar speaking into a microphone
news Politics Saturday, November 28, 2020 - 20:18

Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa's personal assistant allegedly attempting suicide on Saturday turned into a political slugfest between ruling BJP leaders and the Congress.

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president DK Shivakumar demanded a high-level probe into the suicide attempt by NR Santosh Kumar, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa’s relative and personal assistant. 

Speaking to reporters in Karwar, Shivakumar alleged that he had learned of Santosh being under “tremendous pressure” as a few BJP leaders were harassing him. "They have a CD containing compromising content about Santosh and this CD was used to harass him," he alleged. However, he refused to divulge any details.

Although, ruling senior BJP ministers including Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister KS Eshwarappa challenged Shivakumar to name the BJP leaders, who allegedly harassed Santosh. "If he has proof, let him release the video and the names too. If not, he should accept that he has misled the people of this state," he said.

Revenue minister, R Ashoka said that Shivakumar had falsely accused BJP leaders to, gain political mileage. "He has been making statements by 'imagining' scenarios only to stay relevant in state politics," he quipped.

However, it is pertinent to note that the Karnataka Congress chief made these allegations soon after a Kannada News channel aired an interview with Santosh's wife Jhanavi, who claimed that her husband was severely upset with the "ongoing political developments" in the state.

She, however, did not reveal what the developments were. 

A section of the media speculated that Santosh had fallen out of Chief Minister’s coterie of advisors, who allegedly wanted him to resign from his post as Yediyurappa’s personal assistant. 

However, this theory was rubbished by BJP state Vice President and Yediyurappa's son BY Vijayendra. 

"I do not wish to respond to speculation. He is recovering, which is good news. I have seen in the media that his resignation was sought. There is no need for such a discussion. It is the prerogative of the Chief Minister to decide who should be appointed in which post," he said.

Speculation has been doing the rounds that after Yediyurappa fired a senior journalist MB Maramkal, his former political advisor last year, Santosh too was likely to be removed from his post. In quick succession Yediyurappa's Media Advisor, Mahadev Prakash too, resigned last week.

Maramkal and Santosh had played pivotal roles in negotiating terms with the 17 Congress and JD(S) legislators, who had defected to the BJP in 2019. 

Sources said that Santosh was also eyeing an entry into politics and was working in Arasikere constituency in Hassan district, hoping to obtain a ticket to contest the 2023 Assembly elections. 

Santosh had even held a series of press conferences in Arasikere and had levelled charges against seasoned JD(S) legislator Shivalinge Gowda. Shivalinge Gowda had confessed that Santosh was trying to cultivate his own base in his constituency whenever he met mediapersons in Bengaluru.

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.