Bengaluru: Bribery slur on HDK: SIT questions Reddy

Bengaluru, May 20 (DHNS): Former minister G Janardhana Reddy appeared before the Special Investigation team (SIT) on Friday in connection with an allegation he had made in 2006 that the then chief minister H D Kumaraswamy and two members of his Cabinet had received a Rs 150-crore kickback from mining companies.

Appearing before the investigating officer at the SIT’s office on Ballari Road, Reddy sought three weeks to submit evidence to support the allegation.

On July 6, 2006, Reddy, then a BJP MLC, had alleged that Kumaraswamy and two of his Cabinet colleagues had received a Rs 150-crore kickback from mining companies in Ballari. He referred to audio recordings where miners and exporters were heard complaining how they were under pressure to bribe the chief minister. He then called a press conference in Bengaluru to disclose audio and video CDs to substantiate the allegation. But it turned out to be a damp squib with Reddy releasing only one blurred video of unrelated conversation.

The SIT is looking into different cases of illegal mining in Karnataka following the directions of the Supreme Court in a petition filed by activist

T J Abraham. It had summoned Reddy as a witness following the allegation.

Reddy was in the SIT office for about two hours. A source in the SIT said Reddy sought time to collect and submit evidence. “I don’t have any document as of now. But I will collect all the evidence and submit it to the SIT in three weeks,” Reddy said. When asked whether the CD he had mentioned in 2006 ever existed, he quipped: “It was something between me and the IO.”