Audio clip adds new twist to case

Kolar MLA heard saying DC will be transferred

Audio clip adds new twist to case

An audio clip released by the JD(S) wherein an MLA is heard threatening a government official to release seized sand trucks and speaking about the transfer of the deputy commissioner of Kolar has led to a public outcry.

A day after the audio clip was released, several organisations held protests in Kolar on Sunday demanding a criminal case against the MLA. JD(S) State President H D Kumaraswamy, who released the audio clip, said it reflected the circumstances that led to the transfer of deceased IAS officer D K Ravi from the district.

The audio clip purportedly contains a telephonic conversion between independent MLA Varthur Prakash (Kolar assembly constituency) and a revenue department official. Kumaraswamy said it was clear from the conversation that the sand mafia was behind Ravi’s transfer from Kolar. However, he did not specify when the conversation took place.

In the clip, the MLA is heard threatening the official of dire consequences if he did not release four sand trucks seized by the district administration. The legislator, who uses expletives throughout the two-minute conversation, is heard saying “There is a Cabinet meeting on the 12th” and the “the new DC will come on the 13th.” The Deputy Commissioner is not named in the conversation.

Ravi had served as Deputy Commissioner of Kolar till October last. Ravi was found hanging from a ceiling fan at his flat in Bengaluru last week with the government maintaining that the officer had committed suicide because of “personal reasons.”

Kumaraswamy accused Siddaramaiah of misleading the legislature and the people by stating that Ravi was transferred on the request of the officer’s father-in-law. “The chief minister misled the House to safeguard the interests of the sand mafia and land looters,” accused Kumaraswamy.

In the audio clip the revenue official is heard telling Prakash that the DC had tightened the system. Varthur Prakash admitted that it was his voice, but said the recording was four years old. “The tape has also been tampered by Kumaraswamy,” Prakash claimed.

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