Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai late on Friday evening said he has accepted Karnataka Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister KS Eshwarappa's resignation and that he will now send it to Governor Thaawar Chand Gehlot.
"I have accepted Karnataka Minister KS Eshwarappa's resignation, will send it to the Governor," Bommai told mediapersons.
Earlier in the evening, Eshwarappa, against whom police have booked a case for allegedly abetting the suicide of contractor Santosh Patil, submitted his resignation to Bommai.
Eshwarappa's supporters, who had gathered near the Chief Minister's official residence, shouted slogans asking him not to resign, and against Congress leaders.
Meanwhile, before leaving for Bengaluru, Eshwarappa told his supporters and party workers that he will come out clear as innocent from the allegations made against him as part of a conspiracy and will certainly become a minister once again.
"An allegation is being made against me, should I come clear out of it or not?...for me to come clear as innocent, if I continue as Minister when investigation is on, there will be a feeling that I may influence the investigation. So I'm resigning as Minister...I'm telling you that I will come out innocent and will certainly become Minister once again," Eshwarappa told this to supporters and party workers, who were shouting slogans asking him not to resign, before leaving for the state capital.
As a political furore erupted, Eshwarappa had on Thursday evening announced his resignation as Minister.
Stating that party workers are pained and some were even crying asking him not to resign, he said, he has told them very clearly that this is a "agni pareekshe" (trial by fire), an allegation has been made against him, and that several people have conspired against him.
"When I asked them whether I should come out clear from all the allegations or not, they said, I should come out clear...I'm completely confident. From the blessings of our karyakartas (workers), seniors and several swamijis, who have called me. I will come clear out of the conspiracy against me," he said.
Eshwarappa further said he is emotional after getting support and love from leaders like B S Yediyurappa, CM Bommai, Ministers, legislators, and karyakartas.
"I'm confident that I will get justice against the conspirators' allegations, from the love and affection of all these people," he added.
What is the case?
Santosh Patil, a Belagavi-based contractor, was found dead at a hotel in Udupi on Tuesday, weeks after accusing Eshwarappa, who is also a senior BJP leader, of corruption.
In a purported suicide note in the form of a WhatsApp message, Patil had blamed Eshwarappa for his death.
Patil last month complained to Union Rural Development Minister Giriraj Singh and also BJP central leaders stating that he was yet to be paid Rs 4 crore for road works undertaken in Hindalga village and had accused Eshwarappa's aides of demanding 40 per cent commission for the release of the payment.
(With PTI inputs)