As CBI swoops, BSY and kin seek advance bail

As CBI swoops, BSY and kin seek advance bail

Noose tightens: Investigators gather details of assets, bank transactions and investments

Even as the CBI searched the residences of B S Yeddyurappa and his kin across the State, the former chief minister, his sons and son-in-law moved the CBI Special Court seeking anticipatory bail on Wednesday.

The FIRs registered by the CBI involve non-bailable offences which may lead to the arrest of the accused.

While the bail application was moved at 3.30 pm, the Court issued notice to the CBI directing it to file objections on Thursday.

The counsels for Yeddyurappa are likely to question the scope of the Central Empowered Committee constituted by the Supreme Court. While the CEC was mandated to probe mining irregularities in Bellary and surrounding areas, the ongoing investigation that pertains to denotification of land in Bangalore is beyond the purview of the Committee, the counsels pointed out.

Yeddyurappa had earlier secured anticipatory bail from the High Court after the Lokayukta report on mining was submitted to the Special Lokayukta Court.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that the CBI has already approached the Lokayukta police on the cases involving Yeddyurappa.

H N S Rao, Additional Director General of Police, told Deccan Herald that the CBI had in fact written to them asking to safe keep the files on the investigations against Yeddyurappa. “We are ready to provide whatever aid the CBI requires in these cases,” he said.

In Shimoga

A six-member CBI team raided the residence of S Y Arunadevi, daughter of Yeddyurappa, in Shimoga and inspected documents.

According to sources, the team arrived at ‘Mythri’, the residence of Arunadevi, on 7th Cross, Vinoba Nagar 3rd Phase around 7 am and interrogated family members of Yeddyurappa during the raid, which lasted for more than six hours. Arunadevi, who is also the Joint Secretary of the administrative board, Prerana Education Trust and her husband Udaykumar were interrogated in the house, with regard to the activities of the educational institutions run by the Trust.

Yeddyurappa is accused of misusing his position as chief minister to grant undue favours to mining companies (which, allegedly, in a quid pro quo act, made huge donations to Prerana Education Trust).

The CBI team is said to have seized documents pertaining to the bank transactions and property of Yeddyurappa’s family members during the raid.

However, no authentic information was available pertaining to the seizure of cash and gold ornaments during the raid.

The CBI team stepped out of the residence of Arunadevi around 12.45 pm with Udaykumar and inspected safety lockers at Syndicate Bank on BH Road and State Bank of Mysore at Vinoba Nagar. It is believed that the team did not get any crucial documents during the visit to the banks. Later, Udaykumar was sent back home.  

Aruna Devi said the raids had indeed come as a shock to her. “My daughter’s wedding is on May 30 in Bangalore. And, the raids have caused some inconvenience. But we have to brave it,” she said.

She told reporters that the family had fully co-operated with the probe. “We gave all the information that was sought. The officials were courteous to us,” she said. Details like number of members in the family, number of vehicles in their possession, besides details of insurance policies and investments were collected by the CBI team. She said there were no documents pertaining to the Trust in the house.

No raid in Shikaripur

As soon as the CBI team arrived in Shimoga, a rumour was spread in the district that the team would raid the residence of Yeddyurappa in Shikaripur town and his farmhouse on the outskirts of the town.

However, no raid was conducted in Shikaripur. Shimoga MP B Y Raghavendra (son of Yeddyurappa) was in the house till evening. 

In Bellary

The CBI officials raided office of the South West Mining Company (SWMC) at at Toranagal in Sandur taluk and the residences of U K Pandey, CEO of SWMC and Dr Vinod Naval, CEO of its sister group JSW Steels.

The mining group had allegedly donated Rs 10 crore to the Trust. The CBI team, led by SP Manjeshwararao, swooped on the residences of Dr Vinod Naval and U K Pandey at Vidyanagar Township at 6.30 am and seized several vital documents, sources said.

Both the officials were said to be not present at the residences during the raids, sources added. At the mining company office, the team verified several documents during its operation from 9 am to 2.30 pm.

Another team of CBI officials carried out hours-long operation at the SWMC office on Sandur Road and inquired the employees and the officials of the company. Vikas Sharma, Vice Chairperson of the JSW Steels, provided details to the investigating authorities, sources said. However, the CBI officials refused to divulge any details to the media.

The JSW Steel, in a press statement, said that it has done nothing wrong or illegal and it will fully co-operate with the investigating agencies. The company claimed that it was a victim of alleged illegal mining.

Dr Vinod Nowal, Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company, said: “Our firm is always doing the right things. But we have become victims. We have to face it.”

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