Cash seized: Ex- Bhadravathi MLA grilled for 3 hours

The officials of Income Tax Department quizzed former MLA of Bhadravathi, M J Appaji, in their office at Gopala Gowda layout for more than three hours, on Monday.

The former MLA was issued notice to appear for the inquiry following the information given by Girish, cash handler, from whom Rs 2.30 crore cash was seized on April 20 while it was being transported from Bengaluru to Bhadravathi. The cash, in Rs 2,000-denomination was stuffed inside a spare tyre of the car.

The officials had raided the pharmacy store near KSRTC bus terminal in Shivamogga belonging to the relative of Appaji and seized Rs 60 lakh. They had also raided the house at Doddaguppe in Bhadravathi taluk and seized Rs 30 lakh.

JD(S) workers slammed the officials of I-T department for quizzing their leader a day before the election. They alleged that BJP had conspired to ensure that Appaji did not campaign in favour of Madhu Bangarappa, the nominee of coalition partners, a day before the voting. 

The officials the department also took M A Ajith, son of former Appaji, to their custody on the charge that he was carrying Rs 1.39 lakh in cash, which was meant to be distributed to voters. Later, Paper Town police released him after he gave an undertaking that that he would not indulge in any electoral malpractices.

Meanwhile, I-T sleuths swooped down on the close aide and relative of Belgaum BJP candidate and sitting MP Suresh Angadi, at KK Koppa village Belagavi.

According to sources, the officials raided the residence of Shankargouda Patil in a joint operation with local police. The I-T officials also raided the residence of Gurupad Kalli, district general secretary of the saffron party at Hosur village in Savadatti taluk in the district.

A team of I-T officials from Goa and Karnataka, conducted a raid on the residence of businessman Girish Kulkarni in Dharwad on late on Sunday night. The search continued till Monday afternoon. Girish is said to be a close aide of Anand Asnotikar, JD(S) candidate from Uttar Kannada.

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