The newly elected government in Karnataka which is headed by CM H D Kumaraswamy who declared ‘austerity’ as the byword for his government, but the resource minister DK Shivakumar gifted 38 Karnataka MP’s (excluding BS Yeddyurappa and B Sriramulu who have resigned) an iPhoneX which is worth 1 lakh each.
The occasion was the distribution of documents on the Cauvery issue for a meeting in Delhi. The MPs also got a leather bag worth almost Rs 5,000. But eighteen BJP MPs refused the expensive gifts and asked the government to practice “real austerity” and said that the state should not waste public money when farmers and civic workers are in distress.
This incident came to light after a BJP MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar tweeted, “Dear @CMofKarnataka @hd_kumaraswamy — Thnk u 4 convng all MPs tmrw to discuss Cauvery issue. But why is ur govt sendng expnsve phones to MPs? U claim Austerity; pourkarmikas r being denied salaries, but pub money used 4 ths kind of expnsve gifts? I m returng thm to u.” He followed it up with a letter to Kumaraswamy, urging him not to “misspend” public money.
“I want to bring to your notice that along with an agenda folder, your government has sent a costly iPhone worth more than Rs 1 lakh to me. My conscience will not permit to accept this phone and hence I am returning it,” he said in a letter to the CM.