Former chief minister Jagadish Shettar was denied a ticket by the BJP as he didn't indulge in corruption, and did not take 40 per cent commission, alleged Rahul Gandhi in his poll campaign in Karnataka. 

Invoking the teachings of Saint Basavanna, he criticized the BJP for not following his teachings and not addressing the problems of farmers and laborers while allegedly helping only a few billionaires.

During a public rally in Hangal town of Haveri district on Monday, the Congress leader appealed to the voters of Karnataka to reduce the "40% commission" BJP government in the state to a maximum of 40 seats in the upcoming May 10 assembly elections.

rahul gandhi
Rahul Gandhi invokes Basavanna to attack Modi and BJP govt in KarnatakaIANS

"BJP leaders talk of Basavanna ji, they bow down before him but work against his teachings. The BJP makes one community fight against another. BJP leaders don't follow Basavanna ji's ideals, they help 2-3 billionaires but don't care about problems of farmers and labourers," Rahul Gandhi said.

"BJP took 40 per cent commission from people in every contract in the last 5 years. Now, we (Congress) want to do something for the people," he said and urged the people to give at least 150 seats to Congress.

Rahul Gandhi, Kharge arrive in K'taka, to address public rally
Rahul Gandhi, Kharge arrive in K'taka, to address public rallyIANS

He further warned that if BJP gets more than 40 seats, they will try to form a government again by purchasing MLAs as they did last time. Gandhi also cited examples of scams and bribery cases involving BJP leaders and claimed that the previous BJP government was formed by "stealing" MLAs with the "looted" money.

Rahul Gandhi further said: "An MLA's son was caught red-handed in the Mysore Sandal Soap scam. There were many other scams, like Police Sub-Inspector recruitment scam, Assistant professor scam, Assistant Engineer job scam, etc. BJP formed the previous government by 'stealing' MLAs with money. It was a stolen government." 

He accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of hypocrisy, saying that despite his claims of fighting corruption, he shares the stage with corrupt leaders who take a 40% commission.