Sleuths from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), investigating illegal transportation of iron ore to Belikeri port and further exports, picked up two persons on Wednesday.

Sources told The Hindu that the two taken into custody — “Cable” Murali and Srinivas — said to be close associates of the former Minister G. Janardhan Reddy who is now in jail, were allegedly handling the illegal transportation of iron ore on behalf of Mr. Reddy.

The number of arrests has gone up to four. A couple of months ago, Swastik Nagaraj and “Kharapudi” Mahesh, who were also closely associated with Mr. Reddy and allegedly handling his illegal movement of iron ore, were arrested.

The sources said that the CBI sleuths, led by Police Inspector Shivanna, who arrived in the morning, left here with the two arrested persons.

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