Twenty-nine-year-old Padmapriya, who exposed her relative’s involvement with the former Karnataka Minister Gali Janardhan Reddy in a mining scam and facilitated a CBI probe, is now facing a backlash from her husband and his family.
Her husband threw her out of his house, and she is also allegedly receiving death threats.
Adding to her woes, police protection has not been provided to her and her aged parents despite representations to Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar and top police officials in the city.
Recalling her ordeal, Padmapriya, who works as a senior HR executive in an IT company, said that soon after Mr. Reddy’s arrest, she came to know that her relative T. Saravana, who owns JSR Logistics, was handling all transport requirements of his mining business. Mr. Saravana is the brother of her sister-in-law’s husband.
“As a responsible citizen, I tipped off the CBI officials about this, based on which they raided the house and booked Mr. Saravana also,” she told The Hindu.
The CBI has made her a witness in the case. She said she helped the investigating agency thinking that it was her duty to do so. “But, the harassment from my husband’s family began after they learnt that I had informed the CBI. I was not aware that I would land in big trouble. They should provide me security, but they have not done that so far.”
Though the CBI promised to maintain confidentiality of her identity, Mr. Saravana came to know about it and influenced her husband to dump her last October, said Ms. Padmapriya, who has also moved the family court in Bangalore.
Though the family court directed her to stay in her husband’s house, she claimed, her in-laws did not allow her in. “I moved to my parents’ house in the city, but they started stalking me there also, threatening me with dire consequences, and even smashed the windows of my car, as a warning,” Ms. Padmapriya said. She approached senior CBI officials seeking protection, but despite assurances nothing happened.
She said she was forced to seek transfer to Hyderabad, and had to leave her parents behind here.
Even approaching CM didn’t help
Last month, she met the Chief Minister, Director-General and Inspector-General of Police L.R. Pachau and city Police Commissioner Jyothi Prakash Mirji. “Though everyone promised me, nothing has happened.”
“The phone keeps ringing round the clock, warning me not to go against Mr. Saravana,” she said.
Last week the desperate woman met Additional Police Commissioner T. Sunil Kumar to renew her request for security, but in vain. Mr. Sunil Kumar said he was unaware of her request.
A senior police officer in the State police headquarters, who confirmed having received Ms. Padmapriya’s request addressed to the DGP, said the police would not be able to provide her security. “Hundreds of people come to us seeking security at the government’s cost,” he said.
“Providing her security would cost the department dear as at least four constables had to be spared round-the-clock for the purpose. We agree that she helped us in the case, but it was voluntary; and she helped us as she already had some family issues with them,” the official said.