Yeddyurappa`s `black magic` claim may land him in court

Senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah threatened to drag Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa to court over his claim of `black magic` threat to his life.

Updated: Feb 01, 2011, 18:27 PM IST

Bangalore: Senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah Tuesday threatened to drag Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa to court over his claim of `black magic` threat to his life.

"He has indulged in character assassination by claiming I have a hand in organising `black magic` rituals against him," Siddaramaiah, Leader of Opposition in the Karnataka assembly, told reporters here.

"I will file either a criminal case or defamation suit against him for trying to damage my image and reputation," the Congress leader said, reacting to Yeddyurappa`s claim Monday that people who failed to dislodge him by `black magic` were now organising rituals to eliminate him.

The Bharatiya Janata Party`s first chief minister in south India created a flutter in the state`s political circles Monday by telling reporters "I fear for my life".

"I am not sure whether I will return home from Vidhana Soudha (the state secretariat)," Yeddyurappa told reporters in Mysore, about 140 km from here, Monday.

He said, "Siddaramaiah would do anything. He was with Deve Gowda (former prime minister and Janata Dal-Secular president HD Deve Gowda) and would use black magic."

Siddaramaiah said it was true that he had watched Gowda performing `puja`, `homa` and `havana` (Hindu rituals). "I did not know whether Gowda was indulging in `black magic` or `witchcraft`."

Both Yeddyurappa and Gowda are known to consult astrologers, frequently visit temples and organise special `pujas` for divine blessings.

"I am not superstitious and do not believe in these rituals and Yeddyurappa has dragged my name unnecessarily," Siddaramaiah, who joined the Congress in 2006 after rebelling against Gowda, said.

Yeddyurappa`s claim of `black magic` threat drew ridicule Monday from the Congress and the JD-S alike while his colleagues in the BJP wondered why he had made the statement.

Both the Congress and the JD-S said Yeddyurappa seemed to be `mentally disturbed` because of corruption and land scandals surrounding him and "advised" him to "go for a check up and take rest".

Five complaints have been filed in a Bangalore court against Yeddyurappa over land allotment to his close kin and `denotification` of large tracts of land allegedly to benefit people who invested money in his sons` business ventures.

The cases were filed by two advocates after Governor HR Bhardwaj granted them permission to prosecute Yeddyurappa over corruption and land deal charges.

The Bangalore court is yet to take cognizance of the complaints. Hearing on the matter has been adjourned to Feb 4.