The I-T Department allegedly found financial links between DK Shivakumar and VG Siddhartha when the Congress leader’s properties were raided in August 2017.

Links with DK Shivakumar landed VG Siddhartha under Income Tax lens
news VG Siddhartha death Thursday, August 01, 2019 - 10:17

Did Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha’s trouble with the Income Tax department stem from his connection and friendship with former Water Resource Minister DK Shivakumar? The Congress leader was a close confidante of Siddhartha’s father-in-law and former Union Minister SM Krishna. Many in political circles also say that Shivakumar has remained a close friend of Krishna’s family even though the latter joined BJP.

According to TOI, the Income-Tax Department found links between DK Shivakumar and VG Siddhartha when the former’s properties were raided in August 2017. Reports suggest that it was these dealings with Shivakumar that landed the Coffee Day founder under the I-T lens.

DK Shivakumar, who has declared assets over Rs 700 crore is also one of the richest politicians in Karnataka. He came under the I-T scanner after his properties were raided in August 2017, the day 44 Gujarat Congress MLAs were flown down to stay at a resort near Bengaluru to ensure Ahmed Patel was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha. Shivakumar was Congress’ troubleshooter to ensure none of the MLAs were poached by the BJP ahead of the Rajya Sabha Election.

The report states that investigation in Siddhartha’s case arose after the sleuths found evidence of financial dealing with DK Shivakumar during the raid. The I-T sleuths had also raided Shivakumar’s financial consultant N Chandrashekhar Sukapuri and during this search, the investigators allegedly found evidence to financial transactions of the Shivakumar’s kin with Café Coffee Day Ltd and M Soul Space.

In its press statement on Tuesday, the IT department had said that the raids against VG Siddhartha was a follow up action to raids in the properties belonging to a ‘prominent Karnataka politician’.

Shivakumar’s brother and Congress MP DK Suresh also told TOI that the I-T department was in a hurry to attach Siddhartha’s shares in MindTree, in which he held 20.3% stake. “Rules specify that attachment of assets is not to be done at the preliminary stage. In Siddhartha’s case, the assignment is yet to be done and tax demand is yet to be determined, but I-T officials rushed to attach his assets at a time when he wanted to sell them to repay debts,” he told TOI.

The I-T department provisionally attached 74.9 lakh shares of Mindtree in January and released them in lieu of another set of shares.

Speaking to TNM, the Mangaluru Police, which is investigating his death, says that they will question the former Income Tax official mentioned in Siddhartha’s alleged death note and that the letter has been sent to the FSL to verify its authenticity. “The owner of one of the private equity firms Siddhartha had mentioned in the letter is in Mumbai, we will question him and also the former Income Tax DG. Establishing whether the letter is authentic is the first step,” the police said. 

Read: VG Siddhartha death: Police say he had debts running into hundreds of crores

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