Minister, oppn trade charges over IMA scam in Assembly

Minister, oppn trade charges over IMA scam in Assembly

The Founder and Managing Director of I Monetary Advisory (IMA) Mohammed Mansoor Khan, the prime accused in the multi-crore investment scam taken from Enforcement Directorate office in Shantinagar to City Civil Court near SBM circle in Bengaluru on Saturday. (DH File Photo)

The multicrore IMA scam finally found a mention in the Legislative Assembly, albeit during the discussion on alleged 'Operation Lotus' by BJP.

During the discussion, BJP took an indirect dig at Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy for attending a programme organised by I Monetary Advisory (IMA) and having 'biryani' with its founder Mohammed Mansoor Khan. However, the chief minister denied the allegations.

Though the legislators refrained from discussing the causes of the scam, they used the issue to take potshots and accuse each of other shielding corrupt individuals.

Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister Krishna Byre Gowda, criticising BJP for its alleged role in shifting rebel MLAs to Mumbai, also accused the party of attempting to shield an MLA involved in the IMA scam.

Gowda, alleging that BJP had facilitated rebel MLAs to fly to Mumbai, said that it has even tried to help an MLA who was accused by the founder of IMA of borrowing Rs 450 crore from him. He was referring to Roshan Baig who was suspended from the Congress after his outburst against the party leaders.

"Baig has also been questioned by the Special Investigation Team in connection with the case," he charged. 

Taking offence at the remarks by Gowda, BJP leader C T Ravi described the whole scam as 'shameful'. "Who asked the IMA founder to return to the country and offered support from the government?" he questioned, targeting Minister B Z Zameer Ahmed Khan.

"We also know who had biryani with him?" Ravi said taking a veiled dig at Kumaraswamy. 

Don't eat non-veg

Kumaraswamy, meanwhile, defended himself saying he has stopped eating biryani after two cardiac surgeries. "A Special Investigation Team is probing the case and officials are given a free hand to probe," he said.

On attending an IMA event, he said that he was forced by an MLA - Roshan Baig - to attend an Ifthar meet organised by IMA. "It was due to the MLAs insistence I met the CEO of IMA. Moreover, I don't eat Biryani as I have quit non-veg after my surgeries. I am not acquainted with him (Mansoor)," he said.