In an embarrassment to the Congress government in Karnataka, a minister has boasted about his role in the abrupt transfer of a senior woman police official for putting his call on hold on her mobile phone.
A video footage showing Labour Minister P T Parameshwara Naik making a boastful claim for the shunting out of Deputy Superintendent of Police of Kudligi sub-division in Ballari district Anupama Shenai has gone viral.
The claim by Naik, the district minister in charge, to party workers in Hadagali assembly constituency, has added more embarrassment as it comes only a few days after he rejected any role in the transfer as "far from the truth."
The Minister had then claimed that the officer has been transferred for administrative reasons.
"You are important for me, not officers, I have never played politics on officials. For 42 seconds, DySP spoke to me, it is 42 seconds not minutes," Naik is seen telling a group of party workers in the video.
"When I called her again, she did not receive, so I have got her transferred, this is true. Why do we want officials who don't take district Minister's phone?" he said.
Shenai had reportedly received a call from a number which said the Minister would speak to her.
At the same time, she also received a call from the Superintendent of Police, Ballari and she allegedly put the Minister's call on hold and spoke to the SP.
Angered by this, Nailk reportedly took her to task and also complained to her higher-ups.
Meanwhile, Home Minister and State Congress Chief G Parameshwara has said that the DySP has not been transferred.
"I want to clarify to you she has not been transferred, she has been sent on OOD (On Official Duty) by concerned head of the department, we also won't know about it. It happens naturally in administrative and official setup," he said.
The minister drew flak from BJP, with its state unit President Prahlad Joshi, alleging that the morale of the state police had considerably gone down due to the action of politicians like Naik.
Meanwhile, the Congress on Wednesday steered clear of reports on both the video of the Labour Minister and that Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy is facing the heat in the solar scam with a prime accused alleging that bribes of over Rs 2 crore had been paid to him and a minister in his cabinet.
"We have no information", remarked party General Secretary V Narainsamy at the AICC briefing when asked by reporters on the issue.
Kicking up a political storm this morning, Saritha, who appeared before the Justice Sivarajan Commission at Kochi, trained her guns against the CM and his senior cabinet colleague and Power minister, Aryadan Muhammed.
She alleged that Rs 1.90 crore had been given to Chandy's key aide to set up mega solar projects in Kerala and about Rs 40 lakh to the Personal Assistant of Aryadan.