Amidst rumours of Karnataka Water Resource Minister DK Shivakumar’s possible arrest by the Enforcement Directorate, the minister’s brother, Congress MP DK Suresh, alleged that the BJP was deliberately targeting his brother. “The Congress-JD(S) coalition stopped BJP from coming to power after the elections in May. Since my brother DK Shivakumar was instrumental in bringing the coalition to power, they are targeting him. The BJP is trying to bring down the coalition government by wrongly targeting our leaders,” DK Suresh said.
Media reports had on Saturday suggested that the Enforcement Directorate officials had landed in Bengaluru and were in the process of filing an FIR against DK Shivakumar. Sources in the Karnataka government said that the Enforcement Directorate was looking into the cash amounting to Rs 8 crore found during I-T raid at his residence in New Delhi last year.
During a press conference on Saturday, DK Suresh also produced a letter claiming that upon BJP state President BS Yeddyurappa’s request, the Income Tax Department’s officials had conducted raids on DK Shivakumar’s residences and businesses in Bengaluru and New Delhi in August 2017.
“This is to bring to your notice about the irregularities and corruption done by Mr DK Shivakumar and Mr DK Suresh and associates in Karnataka. There is proof and allegations against them being produced in the form of this complaint. Please register if found void, take swift action,” the letter from BS Yeddyurappa to Susil Chandra, Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes, written in January 2017, states.
Speaking to the media, DK Suresh said that the Income Tax officials could not find any proof of tax evasion by DK Shivakumar and that the agency was under the BJP’s thumb.
“The BJP has the I-T, ED and CBI under its thumb. Because the Income Tax officials could not find anything to prosecute my brother, they are bringing in the Enforcement Directorate. This is just revenge politics played by the BJP,” DK Suresh alleged.
In August 2017, the Income Tax Department had raided several properties owned by DK Shivakumar including several of his residences. The Income Tax officials had alleged that they had found Rs 8 crore unaccounted cash at his residence in New Delhi. The Income Tax Department had also filed charges at the Economic Offences court in Bengaluru.
In August this year, Shivakumar and four of his associates had petitioned the Karnataka High Court to stay the proceedings of the Income Tax Department’s investigation. On August 18, the High Court had granted a stay, which had come as a relief to DK Shivakumar.
“Since the stay order was granted, the BJP is now bringing in the Enforcement Directorate because the I-T Department cannot investigate any further,” DK Suresh alleged.