- Janardhan Reddy was arrested in connection with 18 crore bribery case
- He has spent 3 years in jail, has been out on bail since 2015
- He was a minister in the BJP government headed by BS Yeddyurappa
Ballari's mining baron and former BJP minister Gali Janardhan Reddy, who was questioned for hours in an alleged bribery case last evening, has been arrested, the police said. Ali Khan, a close aid of Janardhan Reddy, was also arrested. The former minister, who is facing multiple charges of corruption, has already spent three years in jail. He was out on bail.
"We have taken the decision to arrest him on the basis of credible evidence and witnesses statements. We are going to recover the money and give it to the investors," senior police officer of Bengaluru, Alok Kumar, told reporters. Mr Reddy was sent to 14 days judicial custody by a magistrate.
The 49-year-old appeared for questioning at the Crime Branch office on Saturday evening after a three-day hunt by the police. In a video message, he rubbished reports that he was on the run and was holed up in Hyderabad.
The bribery case involves a private enterprise, Ambident Group, which was allegedly running a Ponzi scheme and cheated thousands of depositors. Its owner Syed Ahmed Fareed claimed after the firm came under the scanner of the authorities, he paid Rs 18 crore to be let off. Janardhan Reddy, who was a minister in the government headed by BS Yeddyurappa, had asked for the money during a meeting a hotel, he said.
The money was eventually paid and routed to Janardhan Reddy's aide, Syed Ahmed Fareed said.
One of the three brothers who wield enormous power in Karnataka's mining district of Ballari, Janardhan Reddy was disowned by BJP chief Amit Shah during campaigning for the assembly elections held in the state in May.
His two brothers, Gali Karunakara Reddy and Gali Somashekhara Reddy were given ticket by the party. Janardhan Reddy had campaigned for them, as well his aide Sriramulu, who won the election from Ballari.
Last week, the party, however, lost the Ballari parliament seat to the Congress.
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