Former Chief Minister allegedly granted undue favours to mining firms

Four days after the Supreme Court ordered a CBI inquiry against the former Karnataka Chief Minister, B.S. Yeddyurappa, for his alleged role in illegalities in mining activities, the premier investigating agency registered a first information report against him and five others in a Bangalore court on Tuesday.

Mr. Yeddyurappa is the first accused in the FIR. His sons, B.Y. Raghavendra, who is the BJP MP from Shimoga, and B.Y. Vijayendra; son-in-law Sohan Kumar; mining leaseholder R. Praveen Chandra; and the South West Mining Company Ltd. (SWML) are the other accused, official sources told The Hindu.

The CBI has booked the accused under Indian Penal Code Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and 409 (criminal breach of trust), among others, and the provisions of the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act and the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The CBI submitted the FIR and related documents to the court in a sealed cover, and it will be opened on Wednesday.

Informed sources said the CBI had constituted a nine-member team comprising CBI Joint Director V.V. Lakshminarayana, Deputy Inspector-General of Police R. Hitendra and Superintendent of Police A. Subramanyeshwara Rao. An officer of the rank of Additional Director-General of Police would supervise the probe.

The main allegation against Mr. Yeddyurappa is that, as Chief Minister, he used his public office to grant undue favours to the mining companies which, in turn, made huge “donations” to the Prerana Education Society run by his immediate family.

Based on the recommendations of the Central Empowered Committee, the Supreme Court ordered an inquiry against the former Chief Minister in connection with the de-notification of land at Rachenahalli in Bangalore East, donations made by SWML in favour of the Prerana Education Society and allegations of illegality in granting mining leases to Mr. Praveen Chandra.