The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) of Karnataka recovered an undisclosed amount of unaccounted cash after carrying out raids in multiple locations connected to state government officials in Bengaluru since the early hours of Friday.
A total of eight locations in Bengaluru and two locations in neighbouring Tumakuru district were raided by eight separate teams. The raids were in connection of top bosses of the Bangalore Development Authority and Karnataka Industrial Areas Development Board.
ACB sleuths said they raided KIADBâ€™s Chief Development Officer TR Swamyâ€™s 15th floor apartment in Mantri Greens complex in Malleshwaram and BDA chief engineer Gowdaiahâ€™s residence in Basaveshwaranagar. The other locations included houses owned by relatives of both the officers.
An ACB source said, â€œWe have unearthed lakhs of unaccounted cash.TR Swamy was trying to get rid of the unaccounted cash when the ACB team went to raid his apartment. He was throwing a bag out the window when the officials broke the door and entered the apartment in Mantri Greens. One bag had fallen on a shaft which we recovered."
He added, "In Gowdaiah's house, we did not find any unaccounted cash but found benami property documents. We have also sealed his office in BDA."
Reacting to Fridayâ€™s raids, Minister for IT, BT and Biotechnology KJ George told BTV, "The ACB officers are doing their job. They will take action once the probe is complete. Let them do their job. Yes, the officers are from my department, but they were in that department even before I became the minister. The ACB will take action if necessary."
Recently, three officials of the Revenue Department were booked by the ACB. The ACB reports directly to the CMâ€™s office and came into existence at the time of former CM Siddaramaiahâ€™s tenure at the expense of the Karnataka Lokayuktaâ€™s independent investigative powers.
On March 9, ACB had raided 36 properties, including offices of nine government officials in Bengaluru, Kolar, Ramanagara, Hassan, Chikkamagaluru and Udupi.
At that time, other than cash, investigators also discovered property documents relating to disproportionate assets.
Reportedly, P Vijaykumar, assistant engineer, rural drinking water subdivision in Koppal, had flushed down Rs 5 lakh in cash keeping the officials waiting at the door.
In March alone, the ACB registered 34 cases of corruption under Prevention of Corruption Act.