In an embarrassment to the BJP ahead of the Assembly elections, the Lokayukta police reportedly recovered unaccounted cash adding up to Rs 2.02 crore from the office of a party MLA and chairman of a state PSU, and Rs 6.10 crore from the residence of the MLA’s son.
Searches were conducted after the MLA’s son was allegedly caught accepting a bribe of Rs 40 lakh in the MLA’s office on Thursday evening, The Indian Express reported.
The MLA, K Madal Virupakshappa, resigned as chairman of the Karnataka Soaps and Detergents Ltd (KSDL), a state PSU, and is absconding. His son, V Prashanth Madal, a Karnataka Administrative Service (KAS) officer who was posted as chief accountant with the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB), has been arrested.
On Thursday evening, Prashanth Madal was apprehended from his father’s KSDL office when he was allegedly accepting Rs 40 lakh as the “first installment”.
During subsequent searches, the Lokayukta police reportedly recovered Rs 2.02 crore in cash from the MLA’s KSDL office, and Rs 6.10 crore from Prashanth’s residence. Prashanth was earlier posted with the now-defunct Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB).
Karnataka Lokayukta Justice B S Patil (retired) said “five persons (including Prashanth) have been apprehended and they have been taken into custody”.
The police have booked a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act. The others who have been named in the FIR are Surendra, an accountant in Prashanth’s office; Siddesh, a relative of Prashanth; and two others, Albert Nicola and Gangadhar.
Targeting the BJP government, the Congress said this was proof that it was a “40 per cent commission government”.
Hitting back, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said the BJP had re-established the Lokayukta to check corruption. “In the absence of the anti-corruption institution, so many incidents had taken place during the Congress regime and were also hushed up,” he said, as he promised an “impartial probe”.