BDA contract case: Lokayukta police register FIR against Yediyurappa, Vijayendra  

Minister S.T. Somashekar and three other members of Yediyurappa’s family also named accused

September 17, 2022 09:02 pm | Updated September 18, 2022 07:57 am IST - Bengaluru

B.S. Yediyurappa

B.S. Yediyurappa | Photo Credit: file photo

B.Y. Vijayendra

B.Y. Vijayendra | Photo Credit: file photo

The Lokayukta police have registered an FIR against former Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa, his son and State BJP vice-president B.Y. Vijayendra and three other members of his family in a case of alleged corruption to award a Bengaluru Development Authority (BDA) contract when Mr. Yediyurappa was Chief Minister.

Cooperation Minister S.T. Somashekar, who was chairman of BDA, and IAS officer G.C. Prakash, who was BDA Commissioner in 2019 when the alleged offence occurred, are also accused in the case booked under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

This is the first FIR against Mr. Yediyurappa on the alleged corruption that pertains to his 2019-21 tenure. This is also the first FIR against Mr. Vijayendra, who has been aspiring for a larger role in the run-up to the 2023 Assembly polls. This period had seen several allegations levelled against the father-son duo and was said to be one of the reasons for Mr. Yediyurappa being asked to step down.

Sting operation

Details of the case had first come out as a sting operation aired on a private channel in 2020. The FIR states that Dr. Prakash demanded a bribe of ₹12 crore on behalf of Mr. Yediyurappa for a ₹666.22 crore BDA group housing contract from Chandrakanth Ramalingam, who had allegedly got the contract at the insistence of Mr. Somashekhar. Mr. Ramalingam allegedly paid ₹12 crore to Dr. Prakash, but a conversation in which he is heard saying the money had not reached Mr. Vijayendra had been aired on television.

Alleged WhatsApp conversations between Mr. Yediyurappa’s grandson Shashidhar Maradi and Mr. Ramalingam about payment of another ₹12.5 crore as bribe, to ensure pending bills of his firm were cleared, and alleged bank transactions showing laundering of this money by Mr. Yediyurappa’s family members through a set of seven shell companies are also part of the complaint, the FIR said.

Social activist T. J. Abraham, the complainant in the case, filed a private complaint seeking a probe, which was quashed by the special court on the grounds that it needed sanction for prosecution.

However, on appeal, the High Court recently said no sanction for prosecution was required for the special court to order a probe, following which the special court directed Lokayukta police to take up an investigation. The Lokayukta police filed a FIR, against nine individuals named in the private complaint, on Friday. 

‘Will fail’

Responding to the development in Kalaburagi, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said that the fresh case would also fail just as the previous ones filed against the former Chief Minister had.

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