- Karntaka Congress worker questioned Siddaramaiah about lawmaker
- Video shows him snatching mic, accidentally pulling woman's dupatta
- Former Chief Minister faces opposition attacks over the incident
The turmoil within the ruling alliance in Karnataka today was capped by a video from the Congress camp that showed former chief minister Siddaramaiah, in a fit of anger, snatching a microphone off a woman, in the process, accidentally dislodging her dupatta and triggering a cascade of criticism from the BJP.
The woman, dressed in green, was identified as a party worker from Varuna, the constituency of his son Dr Yathindra in Mysuru district. In the video, apparently questioning the continued absence of the lawmaker, she is heard saying, "We only met him at election time".
But that appeared to enrage Mr Siddaramaiah, who shouted at her and snatched off the mike.
The BJP was quick to take up the matter. In a tweet, the party called Mr Siddaramaiah "Dushasana" - the character in Mahabharata who tried to strip the Pandavas' wife, Draupadi, at the royal court.
The party also said Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, instead of asking Ananth Kumar Hegde to resign following his remarks on Dinesh Gundu Rao and his wife, should ask Mr Siddaramaiah to step down.
Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said, "This is a crime, the way he abused her. That's how they see women, they haven't changed since the tandoor case. They only respect women from one family."
Mr Siddaramaiah called said it was an "accident" and he was only trying to stop the worker from taking up more time. "I know that woman for more than 15 years now and she is like my sister," he said.
The woman, Jamala, said she had "no issues".
"He was the best Chief Minister. I only told him about some grievances and spoke roughly. I shouldn't have spoken like that to a former a CM. He got angry because I slammed the table," she said.
Mr Siddaramaiah is already facing questions after some Congress lawmakers unfavourably compared chief minister H D Kumaraswamy with him.
Furious, the Chief Minister offered to step down today and said the Congress should exercise better control over its lawmakers.
About the matter, Mr Siddaramaiah said it was the media that was creating trouble, by going from one person to another with questions.
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