CD scandal: Congress demands Jarkiholi’s arrest, President’s rule in State

Congress leader Priyank Kharge addressing a media conference in Kalaburagi on Monday.   | Photo Credit: ARUN KULKARNI

Questioning the State government why it had not arrested BJP leader Ramesh Jarkiholi, an accused in the sex CD scandal case, even after registering a case against him under Section 376(C) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and condemning the protest by BJP activists against Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president D.K. Shivakumar in Belagavi, Congress leaders in Kalaburagi said that the law and order in the State had collapsed and demanded imposition of President’s rule.

Addressing a media conference at the Congress office in Kalaburagi on Monday, former Minister Sharan Prakash Patil and Chittapur MLA Priyank Kharge said that Mr. Ramesh Jarkhiholi’s followers attempted to prevent Mr. Shivakumar from accompanying the Congress candidate for Belagavi Lok Sabha constituency for filing nomination papers.

“Mr. Ramesh Jarkhiholi said before media that he had managed to topple the Congress-JD(S) coalition government and it was not a big deal to handle the sex CD scandal involving him. By saying so, he has challenged the very system and the rule of law. His supporters attempted to stop the State chief of a national party. The victim in the CD scandal openly alleges that she and her family were facing threats. On top of it, Mr. Jarkiholi is not arrested even after a criminal case was filed against him under Section 376(C) of IPC. Would the police keep quiet if the same charges are levelled against a common man? These developments clearly show that the law and order in the State has collapsed and we demand the dissolution of BJP government and imposition of President’s Rule in the State,” Mr. Patil said.

Pointing to the statement of the victim in the CD scandal that she had no faith in the Special Investigation Team (SIT) constituted to probe the issue, Mr. Patil alleged that the very purpose of constituting the SIT is for covering up the crimes committed by Mr. Jarkiholi and saving the face of the BJP government by focussing on the so-called conspirators in the scandal as the terms of reference for the SIT made it clear.

“The scandal is an example of how people in power misused their power and position to sexually exploit women. The victim doesn’t have faith in SIT as she herself expressed clearly. Nor do we, the Congress, have. The SIT is leaking the names and roles of people in the scandal to select BJP leaders and media houses to derail the focus of the investigation. We doubt its impartiality. We want the sitting Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court to probe the scandal,” Mr. Priyank said.

He also questioned why the SIT was not looking into the alleged financial transactions in the scandal. “You [BJP] summon Enforcement Directorate, Income Tax Department and Central Bureau of Investigation even for small issues. Why are you not bringing these central agencies in the sex scandal case even after allegations suggested the payment of ₹9 crore? The fact, however, is that a BSY-free BJP campaign is underway in the BJP and the present sex scandal is a result of it,” Mr. Priyank said.

Congress MLA Kaneez Fatima, leaders Allamaprabhu Patil, Jagadev Guttedar, Tippannappa Kamaknur, Sharanu Modi, and Subhash Rathod and others were present.

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Printable version | May 6, 2021 4:24:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/cd-scandal-congress-demands-jarkiholis-arrest-presidents-rule-in-state/article34188735.ece

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