Dharmasthala: Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today offered prayers at the temple of Lord Manjunatha here but did not undergo a ”truth test” before the deity, a challenge he had thrown to JDS leader H D Kumaraswamy but later retracted.
Yeddyurappa had boldly challenged Kumaraswamy to prove the allegations of corruption and nepotism against him by taking the truth test before a deity.
Kumaraswamy had also alleged that Yeddyurappa had sought to buy his silence by offering inducements in terms of money and future coalition, among others.
Yeddyurappa had later said he had dropped the idea of the truth test on the advice of religious leaders and BJP President Nitin Gadkari.
“Swamijis of Taralabalu, Suttur, Pejavar and Nitin Gadkari prevailed upon me to call off the oath taking programme,” Yeddyurappa told reporters here today.
After offering prayers at the temple, he said, “I did not ask anything for myself. On behalf of six crore people of the state I sought blessings of Lord Manjunatha for the prosperity of Karnataka.”
He said he had prayed for copious rains and prosperity of the state. “In the last three years, the state has been witnessing bountiful rains and prosperity with the blessings of gods. I want this to continue for another two years,” the Chief Minister said.
Yeddyurappa also rejected allegations of Opposition Congress and JDS that the BJP government has pushed the state into a debt trap.
“The state has been witnessing development in the last three years. Financial position is also good”, he claimed.
Yeddyurappa visited the temple along with about 30 MLAs and some ministers.
When asked about plans to expand his ministry, Yeddyurappa, flanked by ministers V S Acharya and M P Renukacharaya, said, “I do not want to discuss political issues here”.
Later he left by bus for Kukke Subramanya, a nearby pilgrim town, to launch some development programmes.
Activists of a farmers’ organisation raised slogans against Yeddyurappa and Kumaraswamy for allegedly bringing politics into the temple town and causing inconvenience to devotees.