Death of contractor: ‘If Ramesh Jarkiholi has evidence, he should produce it now’

The Hindu Bureau
April 16, 2022 12:29 IST

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Laxi Hebbalkar. | Photo Credit: D.B. PATIL

On Thursday, Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi said that the same gang that had conspired against him had conspired against Mr. Eshwarappa

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Laxmi Hebbalkar, Congress MLA, has criticised Ramesh Jarkiholi, BJP MLA, for attributing the death of Santosh Patil, contractor, to a conspiracy.

“Such irresponsible statements will lead to nowhere. They will only create confusion. They will not ensure that the family of Mr. Santosh Patil will get justice. Our fight is to ensure justice for the family. We want the Government to file cases against K.S. Eshwarappa under prevention of corruption Act,” she said. “I welcome the statement of Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi. But why the suspense? If he has any evidence, he should produce it immediately. Why should he wait till Monday?”, Ms. Hebbalkar said.

“We want the Government to conduct an impartial probe and ensure that persons who abetted the suicide of Mr. Santosh Patil be punished. If the Government is to protect a Minister who abetted the suicide of their own party worker, who will protect the common man?”, she said. She was speaking to journalists in Belagavi on Friday.

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On Thursday, Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi said that the same gang that had conspired against him had conspired against Mr. Eshwarappa.

“The same mahanayaka who got me involved in a controversy, has created another controversy around Mr. Eshwarappa. I was forced to resign. But I would advise Mr. Eshwarappa not to resign. I will reveal all the details of the conspiracy in a press conference in in Belagavi on Monday. I will hold a press conference after taking permission from my party senior leaders,” he said.

Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi had also claimed that Mr. Santosh Patil was his follower and that he had advised him not to go public about his problems of pending bills.

Ms. Hebbalkar admitted that she had raised questions about the quality of work done by Mr. Santosh Patil. “I had said that they were not of good quality and I stand by my statements. When Mr. Santosh Patil was doing around 108 civil works in Belagavi rural constituency, Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi was the District in-charge Minister. I invited Mr. Ramesh Jarkiholi to visit the constituency and inspect the works, but he refused,” she said.

She refuted claims by some BJP leaders that Mr. Santosh Patil was unknown to Mr. Eshwarappa or that he had done work without the Minister’s approval.

“Nagesh Munolkar, Hindalaga Gram Panchayat president and BJP leader, has said that he had accompanied Mr. Santosh Patil to Mr. Eshwarappa on two occasions. He has also said that the Minister had given oral instructions to the contractor to complete the works. Murugesh Nirani, Industries Minister, and other BJP leaders also visited the house of Mr. Santosh Patil. They cannot deny such facts now,” she said.

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