Bengaluru, Feb 5: JD(S) leader H D Kumaraswamy on Sunday claimed that RSS was conspiring to make Union Minister Pralhad Joshi the Chief Minister of Karnataka along with eight deputies, after the Assembly polls, and alleged that the latter lacks culture and divides society.

Hitting back, BJP State president Nalin Kumar Kateel said the JD(S) leader's statement against the RSS is unbecoming of a former Chief Minister, and his claims about 8 or 9 Deputy Chief Ministers are borne out of a mindset that is rooted in dynastic politics.

"A conspiracy in the RSS is under way to make Pralhad Joshi the Chief Minister of the State after the Assembly polls. Joshi does not belong to a culture that is most prominent in southern Karnataka," Kumaraswamy said.

Speaking to reporters here, he said, "... Certain decisions have been taken by the RSS to make him the Chief Minister, so he has begun to attack us."

Criticising the dynasty politics and alleged infighting in the first family of that JD (S) for a ticket, Joshi, while addressing special State executive meet of the BJP on Saturday, said 'Pancharantna Yatra' has been taken up, 'Navagraha Yatre' should have been undertaken instead. As 8-9 members of the party patriarch H D Deve Gowda's immediate family are in politics. "...all dramabaazi, will they improve the State," he asked.

Reacting to this, Kumaraswamy today said the public response to Pancharatna schemes of JD (S) has created a fear among the BJP, so they are speaking about his party and family.

The 'Pancharatna Ratha Yatre' is aimed at informing people about a five-fold programme called Pancharatna' that the JD(S) plans to implement if it comes to power, and they include quality education, health, housing, farmer welfare and employment.

"He (Joshi) belongs to the category that divides the country, indulges in conspiracy politics, massacred those who contributed to the country in the name of patriotism," he said. Therefore, he appealed to the Veerashaivas, Vokkaligas, Backward Classes and Dalit communities not to fall prey to the conspiracy of the BJP and RSS which would divide the State.

Claiming that he has received information on the plan to make Joshi the Chief Minister, Kumaraswamy said there would be eight Deputy Chief Ministers, and discussions have taken place in Delhi and the RSS headquarters in this regard.

"I want to tell Kannadigas of Karnataka, he (Joshi) is not of our culture...," he added.

Joshi is currently Union Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Coal and Mines and represents Dharwad Lok Sabha segment.

"Kumaraswamy fears JD(S) won't win even 20 seats in the Assembly polls, so he is affected. He might have spoken about 8-9 Deputy Chief Ministers after looking at his own family, because their politics is such. He has indulged in both dynasty and divide-and-rule politics," Kateel said.

Kumaraswamy is a former Chief Minister and should respect all communities, making such comments about a particular community is unbecoming of him, he said.

Before commenting on the RSS, let Kumaraswamy must make himself aware of the organisation and its ideology, he said.

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Davanagere: Two sanitation workers died after exposure to toxic air while they were cleaning a municipality drainagein Basavanakote village of Jagaluru taluk on Monday evening.

The deceased sanitation workers have been identified as Sathyappa (45) and Mailappa (42).

The duo is said to have been working without taking precautionary measures, as ordered by the panchayat development officer (PDO).

The workers were admitted to the government hospital in Arasikere on having fallen ill after breathing the toxic air of the drainage. Since their condition worsened, they were shifted to the Davanagere district government hospital, but the workers died, having failed to respond to the treatment.

The locals have blamed the government officer for the workers’ death, saying, “The sanitation workers went ahead with their work as ordered by the PDO, without any masks and gloves. The negligible attitude and lapse on the part of the PDO has caused the death of the workers.”

Bilichodu Police have filed a case in this regard and the investigation is underway.