Updated: January 28, 2021 8:02:56 am
A sub-registrar from Chikkamagaluru district in Karnataka has filed a complaint against Karnataka Revenue Minister R Ashoka’s personal secretary for allegedly demanding a bribe.
In his complaint, sub-registrar H S Chaluvaraju said Gangadhar, an employee in Vidhana Soudha Secretariat’s office and deputed as a personal secretary for Ashoka allegedly demanded money from him during the minister’s visit to Sringeri on Sunday.
Sringeri town police registered a non-cognizable complaint on Monday and said they will seek the government’s permission to register an FIR. Chikkamagaluru SP Hakay Akshay Machindra confirmed receiving the complaint.
“On January 24, I received a call from a person who identified himself as Gangadhar working as personal secretary to the revenue minister. He asked me to meet the minister at Adichunchanagiri Convention Hall at Sringeri after 6 pm. When I reached there, Gangadhar arrived around 7 pm. I met him in a room attached to the convention hall where he asked me to give him money,” Chaluvaraju said in his complaint.
Chaluvaraju has released an audio conversion with Gangadhar to the media. “On January 24, the caller asked me, ‘Bartheera?’ in Kannada (are you coming?) then he said, ‘Tartheera?’ (will you bring?) I asked him what should I bring? He said that ‘we will speak’ about it later.
“On Sunday, when the minister was attending an event in the convention hall in Sringeri, Gangadhar took me to a room attached to the hall and asked for money. I said I don’t have the habit of taking or giving money. But on Monday again, he asked for money on phone. I asked him whether his conscience permits him to demand a bribe,” Chaluvaraju said in his complaint attached to the audio conversion.
Karnataka Congress president D K Shivakumar said this was not just a one-off incident and there are many similar allegations which have not come out. “A sub-registrar has, finally, come forward to file a complaint while many others suffer in silence. There are so many cases like this in the state,” he said.
BJP national general secretary C T Ravi said the personal secretary was allegedly collecting money of which the minister was unaware about.
In December last year M Sneha, daughter of Mohan Raj, joint commissioner, excise department, Hospet, Ballari, had made allegations against the then Excise Minister H Nagesh for demanding Rs 1 crore for her father’s transfer to Bengaluru.
She had also wrote a letter to the Prime Minister’s Office about the incident, alleging that her father, who served in the department for five years, had been asked to give Rs 1 crore for his transfer to Bengaluru as he has various health problems. In the letter, she had alleged that Nagesh transferred 600 officials by taking money.
Rejecting the allegations, Nagesh had earlier said, “This a false allegation, made because I’m a Dalit.”
Nagesh was recently dropped from the cabinet by Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa during the reshuffle of the State cabinet.
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