Prosecution has failed to prove the case against former Karnataka chief minister B S Yeddyurappa and 12 others in the Rs 40 crore mining related bribery case. Principal CBI special judge R B Dharmagoudar on Wednesday acquitted the state BJP president, his two sons and 10 others including officials of the company JSW Steel.
The acquittal clears the path for Yeddyurappa to present himself as the Chief Minister candidate of the BJP in the 2018 assembly polls in Karnataka. BJP national president Amit Shah had earlier declared that the Lingayat leader would be the party’s chief minister candidate.
“The CBI court has called the allegations false and politically motivated,” Yeddyurappa said after the verdict. The court accepted Yeddyurappa’s arguments that funds of Rs 40 crores received by his family members from JSW Steel affiliates were genuine donations and business transactions and not kickbacks for mining related favors granted to the private firm during Yeddyurappa’s tenure as Chief Minister of Karnataka.
July 27, 2011: Karnataka Lokayukta submits its final report, indicting then chief minister BS Yeddyurappa and recommending his prosecution under the Prevention of Corruption Act. The report said he was involved in the Rs 20 crore land deal between his two sons, son-in-law and a mining company. The land was denotified after BDA acquired it in 2003-04.
July 29, 2011: Yeddyurappa agrees to quit as chief minister following consultations with senior BJP leaders. The party arrived at an “unanimous” decision to ask Yeddyurappa to make way for a new leader.
July 31, 2011: Yeddyurappa abides by the party leadership’s decision and sends his regination letter to then BJP president Nitin Gadkari.
August 4, 2011: Then Karnataka Governor HR Bhardwaj sanctioned the prosecution of Yeddyurappa by the Karnataka Lokayukta. The governor granted permission to initiate criminal proceedings against him under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
August 8, 2011: A special Lokayukta court issues summons to Yeddyurappa for allegedly denotifying land for the benefit of his family.
Oct 15, 2011: Yeddyurappa surrenders before Lokayukta court in Bengaluru after an arrest warrant was issued against him for allegedly taking bribe to illegally denotify land.
November 8, 2011: Yeddyurappa gets bail after spending 25 days in Bengaluru Central Jail.
March 7, 2012: Karnataka High Court quashes FIR against Yeddyurappa and observed that “there is no case which is made out against Yeddyurappa under provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act or any other law.”
May 11, 2012: The Supreme Court orders the CBI to probe Yeddyurappa’s role in allegedly granting favours to mining companies. The apex court asked the investigative agency to submit its report in three months.
November 30, 2012: Yeddyurappa launches his own party, Karnataka Janata Paksha, after resigning as Member of Legislative Assembly and primary membership of BJP.
January 2, 2014: Yeddyurappa announces merger with BJP ahead of 2014 Lok Sabha elections.