Lokayukta police charge-sheet ex-mayor just after she files papers

Former mayor N Shantakumari, who is contesting the BBMP elections from the Maruti Mandir ward in Govindrajanagar Assembly constituency as a BJP candidate, has been charge-sheeted by the Lokayukta police in a Disproportionate Assets (DA) case.

In the charge sheet filed on Monday, the Lokayukta police have accused her of amassing Rs 1.38 crore of illegal assets. That means, she had 46.9 per cent more assets than her known sources of income allowed.

A person from Mallathahalli had made a complaint to the Lokayukta against Shantakumari in 2010, stating that she had amassed illegal wealth. The investigation was handed over to the Lokayukta police and an FIR was registered in November 2011. The Lokayukta police raided her house and office as well as the houses of her relatives, Gopal and Mohan, in March 2012.

The sleuths seized several property documents from Shantakumari’s house at Bhyraveshwaranagar in Nagarabhavi. They also seized Rs 20 lakh in cash, gold articles worth Rs 17 lakh and 17 bank passbooks.

The Lokayukta police said that Shantakumari had acquired properties in the name of her husband when she was a corporator. Investigation revealed that during the two terms she was a corporator, she purchased 33 properties in and around Bengaluru. The police estimate that the 33 properties are valued at Rs 2.72 crore.

“Shantakumari’s husband owned a fabrication business. The properties were acquired in his name when Shantakumari was a corporator. Investigation has revealed that her expenditure didn’t cross Rs 1.61 crore. Since there was no material to establish the income for acquiring many of the assets, the properties acquired were considered disproportionate assets,” an officer said.

Shantakumari, a three-time corporator, was elected Bengaluru’s mayor in September 2014. There was speculation that the BJP would not field corporators who had become mayors in the last five years. But Shantakumari managed to get a ticket. Incidentally, she filed her nomination papers on Monday afternoon while the Lokayukta police filed the charge sheet towards the evening.

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