Kumaraswamy’s phone tapping allegations: LoP in Karnataka assembly R Ashoka demands CBI probe

HD Kumaraswamy made the allegation while appealing to his nephew and Hassan MP Prajwal Revanna to surrender in sexual abuse case against him

BySouth First Desk

Published May 21, 2024 | 8:53 PMUpdatedMay 21, 2024 | 8:53 PM

HD Kumaraswamy's phone tapping allegation

The leader of Opposition in Karnataka Assembly, R Ashoka, on Tuesday, 21 May demanded a CBI probe into allegations of phone tapping made by JD(S) leader and former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy.

Kumaraswamy had alleged on 20 May that 40 phones, including his and those of his family members and supporters, are being tapped, a claim that Deputy Chief Minister DK Shivakumar and Home Minister G Parameshwara have dismissed.

“Kumaraswamy has alleged that the phones of about 40 people are being tapped. A former CM, he has run the government in the past. So he would have got information from police officials who are in touch with him, based on which he might have made the allegations. Doing such things (phone tapping) is illegal,” Ashoka said.

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BJP leader Ashoka’s demand

Talking to reporters, he said that such phone tapping machines, made in China, are illegally available at ₹40-50 lakhs and that they might have been used.

“The government is saying it has not tapped phones. Then how many such (phone tapping) machines have come to Karnataka? When did they come? In whose house they are there? If these things are probed and made known, everything will come out,” he added.

Related: Karnataka JD(S) chief HD Kumaraswamy urges nephew Prajwal Revanna to surrender, says his phone is being tapped

Stating that some senior police officials have told him that during certain situations, the phones of opposition leaders are tapped, Ashoka, who has served as Home Minister in the past said, if the government has not tapped the phones, let it order a probe regarding such illegal tapping machines in the state and seize them, “so it is known who are behind it.”

“Kumaraswamy has said based on the information he has. Whoever it is, tapping phones is an unpardonable offence, such people should be put behind bars…..if the government is not involved in tapping, then they should order a CBI probe into the allegations.

“As the machines have come from abroad, local police can’t do it. Let them give it to the CBI and let the truth come out,” he added.

HD Kumaraswamy’s allegation

While appealing to his nephew and Hassan MP Prajwal Revanna – who has been accused of sexual assault of several women – to surrender, the Karnataka JD(S) chief levelled a serious allegation against the Congress government in the state.

He said the state government was tapping his phone as well as the phones of around 40 other people. Kumaraswamy told reporters: “The government is tapping the phones of everyone around me, including Revanna’s phone. Even my phone is also being tapped.”

He added: “This government has concluded that our family should be finished politically. It was revealed in the audio tapes itself.”

Also Read: Prajwal Revanna case: Karnataka government writes to MEA to cancel Hassan MP’s diplomatic passport

Ruling Congress denies allegations

Responding to the allegations, both Deputy CM DK Shivakumar and Home Minister Earlier in the day, Home Minister G Parameshwara reiterated that the government had not tapped the phones of Kumaraswamy and others, as claimed.

“If he (Kumaraswamy) has accurate information that it has been done, let him give the information, and we will get it investigated as to who has done it and why,” said the Home Minister.

(Edited by Neena with PTI inputs)