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Leaked audio names DK Shivakumar as collection agent; major embarrassment for Congress

The two leaders seemed to have forgotten that the audio systems were on when they were privately accusing state Congress chief DK Shivakumar of taking 10 per cent bribe and his aides making Rs 100 crore through collections.

Leaked audio names DK Shivakumar as collection agent; major embarrassment for Congress-vpn
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Bengaluru, First Published Oct 13, 2021, 2:56 PM IST
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A massive political controversy has erupted in Karnataka over the leak of a private conversation between former Congress MP V S Ugrappa and KPCC media coordinator Salim while attending a media briefing. 

The two leaders seemed to have forgotten that the audio systems were on when they were privately accusing state Congress chief DK Shivakumar of taking 10 per cent bribe and his aides making Rs 100 crore through collections.

In the video, KPCC media coordinator Salim is heard saying, "It (commission/bribe) was 6 per cent to 8 per cent earlier. DK (Shivakumar) made adjustments and raised it from 8 per cent to 12 per cent. Uppar (Bengaluru), G Shankar (Udupi MLA), Hanumanthappa (Ballari MLA)."

To this, former Congress MP VS Ugrappa said that Uppar was from Bijapur in Gulbarga. 

Salim further said, "His house is near SM Krishna's house here in Bengaluru. This is a huge scandal and if you dig deeper, his (DK’s) name will also crop up. You are not aware sir, but Mulgund (DK Shivakumar's aide) makes Rs 50-100 crore in collections. If he made Rs 50-100 crores collection, imagine how much DK would have made." 

Ugrappa is then heard, "We all made DK the president (of KPCC) and this shows everything." 

Salim then went on to take potshots at the state Congress chief. "You must have noticed, DK stutters while talking and as if he is drunk. May be he is suffering from low BP. The media thinks he is drunk. His body language is such. But just see how Siddaramaiah's body language is -- stern, a stern man," he said.

The damaging statements come as a major embarrassment for the Congress considering that DK Shivakumar has been under the scanner of central agencies in the past.

The fact that the audio leak happened within the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee office on Tuesday put the Congress in a spot with regard to coming up with any sort of a denial.

However, the party sought to give the controversy a twist and said that they were referring to the corruption in BJP. 

In fact, DK Shivakumar later said that the party's disciplinary committee headed by Rehman Khan will decide on the action to be taken against the two leaders.

In a way, it also exposes the factionalism within the Congress about which the media has been reporting time and again.

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