Congress MP V. Hanumantha Rao launched an all out attack against Karnataka Tourism Minister and owner of Obulapuram Mining Company Gali Janardhan Reddy demanding his arrest in the wake of the findings of the Central Empowered Committee of the Supreme Court on illegal mining in Anantapur district.
Reacting to the CEC findings of illegal mining by OMC and four other companies, Mr. Rao told reporters here on Saturday that the illegal mining by OMC was a much bigger scam than the stock market scam by Harshad Mehta. “Janardhan Reddy should be put behind bars like Harshad Mehta,” he said, and demanded that he would raise the issue in Parliament and confront the BJP leaders M. Venkaiah Naidu and Sushma Swaraj for shielding Mr. Janardhan Reddy.
The Rajya Sabha member wanted the iron ore stock lying in Krishnapatnam Port to be seized. He said Mr. Janardhan Reddy’s company had indiscriminately undertaken mining in the government and private lands. He wanted the minerals of OMC to be diverted to the Visakha Steel Plant.
Stating that all the officials involved in supporting the illegal activity of OMC and other mines should be punished, Mr. Hanumantha Rao said he would write a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh apprising him about the state of affairs in the mining area in Anantapur district. He said if the activities of Mr. Janardhan Reddy were left untouched, the very existence of Congress party in the State was at stake.
On the other hand, APCC president D. Srinivas said it was only an interim report and it was not proper to react to the developments. “Government will certainly act on the report of the Supreme Court. It will act in accordance with the Supreme Court observations,” he said, in response to a query at a press conference here on Saturday.
AICC secretary P. Sudhakar Reddy said the government would take action as per the directions of the Supreme Court. There was no need for the government to come to the aid of any company, he clarified.