Business Standard

Karnataka ex-CM denied anticipatory bail in mining scam

IANS  |  Bengaluru 

A Special Lokayukta (Ombudsman) here on Tuesday rejected the anticipatory bail plea of Karnataka's former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy in a mining case in which he is alleged to have taken bribe for favours.

"I need not panic because my anticipatory bail plea has been rejected. I have to follow my advocate's advice. My future course of action will be decided by my advocate," Kumaraswamy, a Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) lawmaker, told reporters here.

The anti-graft watchdog had granted a seven-day interim bail to Kumaraswamy on May 17 in the Janthakal mining case.

The former Chief Minister is accused of misusing office, corruption and illegal grants of permission when he was the Chief Minister of the state's first JD-S-BJP coalition government in 2006-07.

"They are raking up an 11-year-old case. It is political vendetta," he said.

Though state Revenue Principal Secretary Gangaram Baderia was arrested on May 15 in the same case, he secured bail on June 3.

Meanwhile, former BJP Minister G. Janardhana Reddy appeared before the anti-corruption watchdog (Lokayukta) SIT on Tuesday.

The SIT had, in May, asked Reddy to furnish evidence to support the bribery allegations he levelled against Kumaraswamy in 2007.

Reddy has alleged that Kumaraswamy and his family received Rs 150 crore in kickbacks from various mining companies.

Kumaraswamy said: "The SIT has asked Janardhana Reddy to produce documents. How can Reddy produce documents on an alleged corruption deal which has not taken place at all? I will come out unscathed."

But the SIT chief, K.S.R. Charan Reddy, on Tuesday said Janardhan Reddy's statement was recorded but refused to disclose its nature.

Kumaraswamy is alleged to have given permission to extend the lease to Janthakal Enterprise for extracting iron ore from the mineral-rich Ballari, Chitradurga and Tumakuru districts and export it.

The license was extended for 40 years (1985-2025) on August 23, 2007. The company is owned by jailed mining baron Vinod Goel.

The extension on license was granted by Baderia, who was former Mines and Geology Department Director, on the basis of two forged letters from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests.



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First Published: Tue, June 13 2017. 19:10 IST