Bengaluru, Nov 29: Karnataka Deputy chief minister (DCM) Govind M Karajol on Friday slammed Congress for calling all disqualified MLAs 'incapable leaders' after they joined the BJP on November 14 just ahead of the by-polls in the state and said that the Congress has even cheated Babasaheb Ambedkar.
"The MLAs are capable and worthy, while the Congress is unworthy. They treated people in a bad manner. Congress is the reason behind Ambedkar's election defeat. The party has cheated Baba saheb Ambedkar. That is the nature of Congress. This is how they cheated the nation and the educated Dalits."
"Congress does not want Ambedkar to sit with Jawaharlal Nehru as he was a Dalit," he added.
He further slammed the Congress for alleging that the 17 MLAs sold themselves to BJP, saying, "No one got sold out. They themselves have declared of having thousands of crores. They are not so poor to be get sold. They have a lot of money. Congress must understand this."
By-elections for 15 Assembly constituencies in Karnataka will be held on December 5. The BJP has already announced candidates on all seats.
The 17 rebel legislators of Congress and JD(S) were disqualified in July this year under the anti-defection law after they tendered their resignations. They were also barred from contesting polls for the duration of the current Assembly, which is slated to end in 2023.
The move led to the collapse of the Congress-JD(S) coalition government, paving way for BJP to stake claim to form a new government in the state.
The disgruntled MLAs then moved the apex court challenging their disqualification. They sought quashing of the order passed by the Speaker and ban imposed on them against contesting elections.
The Supreme Court allowed all the disqualified MLAs to contest the by-polls to be held on December 5 for the seats that fell vacant in July.
DyCM slams Cong for calling disqualified party-hopper MLAs 'incapable'