Submitted by Editor on Tue, 2016-10-18 17:02 Bengaluru: Having got burned by the controversy that raged over his accepting the gift of a Hublot watch from a friend, chief minister Siddaramaiah is a chastened man. On Tuesday, the chief minister refused to accept gifts of a silk dhoti and shawl from Neela Manjunath, Managing Director Karnataka Silk Industries Corporation (KSIC). The offer of the gift and consequent rejection came at a meeting of Neela Manjunath had with the chief minister. Siddaramaiah declined the gifts, apparently conscious of the Opposition’s penchant to rake up such issues. When the Hublot watch case came up in February this year, Siddaramaiah initially said he did not know who gifted the watch to him. Later, a Dubai-based surgeon, Dr Girish Pillai Chandra Varma, personally submitted an affidavit stating that he gifted the watch to the chief minister. Varma has also stated that he has neither property nor any business interests in Karnataka and had given the watch to the Chief Minister out of friendship and affection. The opposition BJP and JD(S), who were looking for an issue to corner the government, gleefully latched on to the controversy and for three days did not allow the either House of the legislature to function. Later, Siddaramaiah handed over the diamond-encrusted Hublot to legislative assembly speaker Kagodu Thimmappa along with a letter asking him to make it a state asset.