In a setback for Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, the Karnataka High Court on Wednesday quashed a special Lokayukta court order which had dismissed a private complaint against him in a land denotification case. The Times of India reported that the special court had dismissed the private complaint filed by industrialist Alam Pasha on July 25, 2016. The case pertains to a parcel of land acquired by the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (a government body) in 2006 to set up a hardware park in Hoovinayajanahalli in north Bengaluru, which was subsequently denotified. The allegation against the Chief Minister is that he had misused his public office for this purpose and in turn caused a loss to the public exchequer.
Following this, Alam Pasha had approached the Karnataka High Court. Hearing Pashaâ€™s plea, Justice John Michael Cunha directed the trial to be carried out, based on the chargesheet filed by the Lokayukta police in May 2012. Incidentally the same chargesheet had mentioned similar allegations against his then cabinet minister Katta Subramanya Naidu, regarding denotification of a land parcel in Nelamangala taluk in greater Bengaluru.
The New Indian Express cited sources in the CMO stating that Yediyurappa will now approach the Supreme Court to seek relief. In January, the CM had faced a similar blow when the same bench of Justice Cunha had restored a 2015 complaint alleging forgery over withdrawal of approval for a different parcel of land in Devanahalli Industrial Area filed by Pasha.
In that case, other than Yediyurappa, present Mines and Minerals Minister Murugesh Nirani, former principal secretary VP Baligar and former managing director of Karnataka Udyog Mitra Shivaswamy K were named as the other accused. All the accused in the case were booked under the Indian Penal Code and Prevention of Corruption Act related to alleged criminal conspiracy and forgery of documents.