March 19, 2021 1:57:45 am
A key missing suspect in a case of an alleged attempt to extort money from former Karnataka minister Ramesh Jarkiholi has issued a video statement from an undisclosed location, claiming that he had interacted with the young woman in the purported sex CD, who is also missing, on more than a dozen occasions. He claimed that she told him about her grievances.
Naresh Gowda, a former journalist who worked for multiple local TV channels and is considered by police as a key figure in the case, also claimed that he was not linked to the alleged efforts to extort and blackmail Jarkiholi, but knew the woman and was aware of her grievances.
In the video, Gowda said he is in hiding because he fears being framed in the case.
“It is true that the girl is known to me. She approached me through another person because I am a journalist,” he stated.
According to the video statement, Gowda interacted with the woman on 15 to 20 occasions over the Jarkiholi issue but eventually got involved in other personal issues and did not pursue it. The woman later called him and asked him about progress in “getting her justice”, he said in the video.
Gowda’s video comes soon after the family of the missing woman filed a police complaint on March 16 in Belagavi, saying that she had been abducted by unknown persons.
Meanwhile, former Karnataka chief minister H D Kumaraswamy on Thursday reiterated that the CD case involves a Rs 5-crore extortion attempt on the former minister. “I had stated earlier that this is a Rs 5-crore deal and that a youth called Naresh is involved. It is all playing out now.,” he said.
Police suspect Gowda had a key role in the release of the CD. Jarkiholi resigned as minister on March 3, a day after TV channels played the CD.
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