Bengaluru: Searches are underway by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) at 14 locations linked to Karnataka Congress President D K Shivakumar, in connection with allegations of acquisition of disproportionate assets.
According to sources, places that are being searched include properties of Shivakumar's brother and MP from Bengaluru Rural- D K Suresh. CBI sleuths reached their residence here and also at Doddalahalli in Kanakapura, early this morning.
"CBI has registered a case against the then Minister of Karnataka Government and others on the allegations of acquisition of Disproportionate Assets. Searches are being conducted today at 14 locations including 9 in Karnataka, 4 in Delhi, one in Mumbai," a statement by CBI said.
Congress leaders have hit out at the BJP governments at the Centre and the state for the CBI searches, questioning its timing ahead of November 3 bypolls to Sira and R R Nagar Assembly segments.
Responding to the searches, Congress General Secretary, Randeep Singh Surjewala said, "The insidious game of intimidation & machinations of Modi-Yeddyurappa duo being executed by a puppet CBI by raiding @DKShivakumar wont deter us. CBI should be unearthing the layers of corruption in Yeddyurappa Govt. But, 'Raid Raj' is their only 'Machiavellian Move!"
"Let Modi & Yeddyurappa Govts & BJPs frontal organizations i.e CBI-ED-Income Tax know that Congress workers & leaders will not be cowed down nor bow down before such devious attempts. Our resolve to fight for people & expose BJPs maladministration only becomes stronger," he said in another tweet.
Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah too in a tweet said, "@BJP4India has always tried to indulge in vindictive politics & mislead public attention. The latest CBI raid on @KPCCPresident @DKShivakumar's house is another attempt to derail our preparation for bypolls. I strongly condemn this."
A S Ponnanna, a senior advocate in the High Court of Karnataka, also a Congress spokesperson, questioned the searches, claiming that the court had asked CBI not to precipitate, as Shivakumar had questioned the permission given by the state government to CBI to probe the alleged corruption charges against him.
"I'm surprised politics is down to this level...CBI has to function under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, under which if they have to come to a state and investigate, they have to get permission from the state government, the permission that was given has been questioned by Shivakumar," he said.
"The court had said do not precipitate, what I have understood from this is- they (CBI) should have not have acted. They should have got it vacated from the court and acted, after permission from the court," said Ponnanna, who served as Additional Advocate General during the Congress government, adding that the investigation should be fair and lawful.
Earlier, Shivakumar was arrested on September 23 last year by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the money laundering case and was lodged in Tihar jail under judicial custody.
He was released from the Jail on October 23 after the Delhi High Court order granted him bail.