Bengaluru, May 21: In a major embarrassment for the Congress, its MLA from Yellapur Shivaram Hebbar on Monday said a tape released by his party purportedly showing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) allegedly offering bribe to buy the support of Congress legislators was ‘fake’. Hebbar said that the voice of the woman in the audio clipping was not of his wife.

Shivaram Hebbar, in a Facebook post, wrote: “I learnt about the audio clippings of the conversation purportedly between my wife and BJP leaders later when I was in the assembly. This is neither my wife’s voice nor has she received any call. I condemn whoever has released such audio clippings for political reasons. This is a fake audio tape…”

The said audio tape was released by Congress MLC V S Ugrappa on Saturday. The Congress had claimed that the tape was of a recorded call by BJP leaders offering Rs 15 crore bribe to Hebbar’s wife for his support. Reacting to the development, Ugrappa told a news channel that it was a sting operation done by some media house.

However, Congress MLA from Hirekerur BC Patil reiterated that he was offered bribe by BJP leaders for support during the Supreme Court-ordered floor test. “They (BJP) offered me Minister post and all, it’s a fact. I don’t know about Hebbar, I can talk about myself. Yeddyurappa, Sriramulu and Muralidhar Rao spoke to me,” Patil told news agency ANI. The Congress released a couple of call recording accusing the BJP of indulging in horse-trading ahead of the floor test.