Bengaluru: Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah on Monday slapped a Rs100 crore legal notice on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its leaders Prime Minister Narendra Modi, national president Amit Shah and state unit chief B. S. Yeddyurappa.
Senior Congress leader and Siddaramaiah’s advocate V. S. Ugrappa, in the notice, said that Modi and other members of the party, on various occasions had intentionally and maliciously made false and derogatory statements against Siddaramaiah.
With Karnataka assembly elections scheduled on 12 May, the two national parties have used the state as its platform to trade serious charges and discredit each other in the run-up to the polls. The BJP and the Congress, believed to be the two main contenders in the Karnataka polls, have intensified their attacks against each other on issues like corruption, the economy, sharpening social divisions and encouraging radical element.
The legal notice mentioned Modi’s public speeches, on several occasions, including referring to “Karnataka Ki Congress sarkar, 10% ki sarkar", “ease of doing murders" and “Seeda Rupaiya Sarkar" among several other barbs aimed at Siddaramaiah.
The notice also stated that the advertisements and pictures of Siddaramaiah were wrongly used to depict false charges.
“These imputations of irregular dealings, unprofessional conduct or dishonesty are bound to affect my client’s reputation in the eyes of the public, government officials, the intelligentsia and his peers," the notice said.
Siddaramaiah has also used public meetings and social media to target BJP leaders including Modi.
The legal notice sought an unconditional public apology from the four respondents , cease and desist from making false and malicious statements forthwith.
“In the event you fail to do so, please note that you have rendered yourself liable to civil and criminal action and payment of exemplary damages of ₹ 100,00,00,000/- (Rupees One Hundred Crores Only) and cost of this notice bearing ₹ 1,00,000/- (Rupees One Lakh Only) and my client shall initiate appropriate legal proceedings as per provisions of the law of the land at your cost and consequence thereof," the legal notice stated.