Congress leader and former minister Roshan Baig, who recently criticised senior Congress leaders over poor results in the Lok Sabha elections and has been linked to a Ponzi scheme in his constituency, was suspended by the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) on Tuesday.
He was suspended for indulging in 'anti-party' activities. "All India Congress Committee has approved the proposal sent by KPCC to take action against Roshan Baig on account of his anti-party activities. He has been suspended from the party with immediate effect on the basis of an inquiry conducted on the matter," according to a release by the party.
Baig had criticised All India Congress Committee (AICC) leader and Karnataka in-charge KC Venugopal, KPCC President Dinesh Gundu Rao and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. In particular, he had termed Siddaramaiah as 'arrogant' and Dinesh as 'immature' in an outburst against the party's functioning.
He had also hinted at leaving the party and reports had suggested he was joining the BJP. Congress had given him a showcause notice to which he had not responded.
Roshan is a seven-time MLA in the Congress and he had also expressed his unhappiness at being left out of the coalition cabinet under Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy
Recently, he has been linked to a Ponzi scheme in his Shivajinagar constituency run by the founder of IMA Jewels, who allegedly defrauded hundreds of investors, mostly Muslims, in Bengaluru.
Even though Roshan dismissed his link to the scheme, senior Congress leaders have said that Roshan had approached them along with Mansoor Khan, the founder and owner of IMA Jewels. Mansoor, in a widely circulated audio clip, claimed that he had paid Rs 400 crore to Roshan Baig which had not been returned to him, an allegation denied by Roshan.
KPCC President Dinesh Gundu Rao on Tuesday said that Roshan's links to the scam will be brought to the notice of the AICC.
A Special Investigation Team (SIT) is currently probing the case and the number of complaints from investors has risen to more than 38,000.