Senior Congress leader and MLA D.K. Shivakumar on Friday claimed that inquiries ordered by the former Chief Ministers H.D. Kumaraswamy and D.V. Sadananda Gowda against him have drawn blank and the former Lokayukta N. Santhosh Hegde had not even made a mention of his name in his report on illegal mining.

Participating in a meet-the-press programme organised by the Bangalore Reporters Guild and Press Clulb of Bangalore, he said that attempts were being made by some to sully his image.

He admitted that the value of his assets grew to Rs. 175 crore as submitted before the Election Commission from Rs. 65 crore in 2008 because of appreciation in land value. “I have a loan of Rs. 89 crore, but nobody had highlighted it,” he said. He claimed that he was doing business, but there was nothing illegal in that.

Swipe at Sindhia

Responding to the allegations of his Janata Dal (Secular) opponent in Kanakapura constituency and former minister P.G.R. Sindhia that he distributed watches and saris to people, Mr. Shivakumar called him a “habitual liar.” He said that Mr. Sindhia was now distributing rice, dal, onion and chicken to voters.

Exuding confidence, he said that in the recently held urban local body elections, his party won 22 wards whereas Mr. Sindhia’s got four.

JD (S)-BJP link

Mr. Shivakumar, also KPCC campaign committee vice-chairman, said that his party would win 140 seats. As many as 40 BJP leaders including ministers were looking for migrating to other parties for ticket, which showed the pathetic condition of that party, he claimed.

He said that the BJP had not cared to expel even the former minister G. Janardhan Reddy, who was in jail, from the party. He alleged that there was an “understanding” between the JD(S) and the BJP.