Illegal money transfer case Minister B Nagendra will be summoned, says Shivakumar

PTI, May 30, 2024, 7:46 PM IST

Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister D K Shivakumar on Thursday said Scheduled Tribes Welfare Minister B Nagendra will be summoned and an explanation will be sought, following allegations against him in connection with an illegal money transfer case and the death of an official. He said Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is looking into the case very seriously, and a detailed report has been sought from the officials.

The unauthorised transfer of Rs 88.62 crore from Karnataka Maharshi Valmiki Scheduled Tribes Development Corporation’s bank account came to light, after accounts superintendent Chandrashekhar P, died by suicide on Sunday evening, leaving behind a death note.

He has named corporation’s Managing Director J G Padmanabh, accounts officer Parashuram G Durugannavar and Union Bank of India Chief Manager Suchismita Rawal in the note, while also stating that the minister had issued oral orders for transferring the funds.

The Opposition BJP is demanding the minister’s resignation and the case be handed over to the CBI for probe.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Parameshwara visited the deceased officer’s family and offered condolences to them.

Speaking to reporters here, Shivakumar said, ”Seeking resignation is the duty of the opposition, they will seek it. We will certainly look into it. I have seen the FIR. The CM is also observing it very seriously, we will call and talk (to Nagendra). We will look into what is true and lies,” Shivakumar.

Just because someone has made some allegations without any evidence, we cannot react, he added.

”If anyone has committed wrong, it is wrong. There is no doubt about it. We have sought a complete report from officials, and officials have been suspended. I’m not saying that with suspensions everything will be fine. The CM has taken it variously. Whether it is bank involved or officials or whoever it is, merciless action will be taken,” he added.

Two FIRs have been registered following Chandrashekar’s death. The first was against the three people named in his death note, and the second was against six bank officials for the alleged fraud.

The state government on Wednesday suspended the Managing Director and an official of the Corporation, whose names have been mentioned in the death note.

When pointed out that Congress, while in opposition, had sought the then BJP Minister K S Eshwarappa’s resignation following the suicide of a contractor naming him, but is not taking action against its own minister now, Shivakumar said, there is no direct reference to Minister Nagendra in this case. ”We are examining it, there is no question of protecting anyone. It is a matter of crores of rupees.” ”I have gone through the FIR. We have contacted our officers for details, we will get to know certain information. We will summon the minister also, we should have a fair hearing. Let’s see,” he said.

Ruling out talks about replacement of the KPCC chief post, which he is currently holding, Shivakumar said, ”It’s false. No talks of president post or anything for now. With local body polls around where will they (party) leave me?” Stating that candidates for MLC polls will be decided by the high command, Shivakumar indicated that Chief Minister Siddaramaiah’s son and former Varuna MLA Yathindra Siddaramaiah may get a ticket.

Siddaramaiah and Shivakumar today returned from New Delhi, where they discussed with the Congress high command regarding candidates for the biennial election to 11 seats of Karnataka Legislative Council to be elected by Members of Legislative Assembly on June 13.

As per the existing strength of parties in the Assembly, the Congress can win 7, BJP can win three and JD(S) one seat.

”We have given the list to Delhi and came. More than 300 people are seeking tickets. We have shortlisted 65 names considering all sections, they (high command) will decide. They have sought our opinion, we too have shared our opinion. ”We had a commitment towards Yathindra, as the high command had promised him a seat for vacating (Varuna assembly seat to father Siddaramaiah),” he said.

Asked about Home Minister Parameshwara expressing discontent, Shivakumar said, he has discussed with the CM and high command, there is nothing.

”Those who worked for the organisation will be given priority. Also, some seniors, about seven to eight people who lost the polls, are seeking tickets, and also many who have sacrificed assembly seats. High command will take the final decision,” he added.

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