Bengaluru: Even as the Karnataka government grapples with the threat of Congress MLAs walking out of the coalition, there is fresh trouble ahead. A video clip, that purportedly has Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy telling someone that the killers of a party leader be “mercilessly” eliminated, has emerged, leaving the state government red-faced.

The clip surfaced hours after the killing of a Janata Dal (Secular) leader in Mandya district on Monday. In it, Kumaraswamy can be heard speaking on the phone, telling the person on the other end that the killers be shown no mercy.

The CM can be heard saying on the phone, from the crime scene, “He was a good man. I don’t know who killed him and who killed him in this manner. Shoot them (the killers) mercilessly, there would be no issues.” He was reportedly talking to senior police officials.

Later, however, Kumaraswamy reportedly defended himself. “It was not an order passed by me as the chief minister. It was due to anger. The suspects are wanted in two other murder cases. They were in jail and now they have killed one more person,” he told a portal.

JD(S) leader Prakash was hacked to death around 4.30 PM, reportedly by men on motorcycles who gave his car a case before attacking him with machetes.