Central probe agency Enforcement Directorate today questioned Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar in the National Herald money laundering case, officials said.
Mr Shivakumar, 60, told reporters in Delhi before stepping into the agency office at APJ Abdul Kalam Road that he was a "law-abiding citizen" and hence he was deposing before the agency despite not knowing why was he exactly called.
"I am a law-abiding citizen...I have respect for the law...I had requested for a time (deferring October 7 summons) but they said no you have to come. I have come today...let me see, let me hear them, let me answer whatever I know...," he said.
The senior Congress leader said he reached Delhi after leaving the Bharat Jodo Yatra traversing through Karnataka in the middle. Mr Shivakumar had walked along with party leaders Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi on Thursday during the yatra.
Mr Shivakumar had appeared before probe agency ED last on September 19 in Delhi where he was questioned with regard to another money laundering case linked to alleged possession of disproportionate assets.
The latest round of questioning pertains to Mr Shivakumar and his MP brother DK Suresh donating an unspecified amount of money in the past to Young Indian, the company that owns National Herald. The agency wants to know the details of these transactions, sources told Press Trust of India.
Working President of Telangana Congress J Geeta Reddy and few other party leaders have also been questioned by the agency with regard to similar transactions made by them in the past.
Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and other senior Congress leaders like Mallikarjun Kharge and Pawan Bansal have been questioned by the Enforcement Directorate over the last few months in the National Herald money laundering case.
Mr Shivakumar first got into the Enforcement Directorate crosshairs when he was arrested by the agency on September 3, 2019 following multiple rounds of questioning in a case that emerged from an Income tax department action against him. The Delhi High Court had also granted him bail in October that year.
In May this year, the agency filed a charge sheet against him and some others linked to him in this case.
The case as registered after taking cognisance of a charge sheet (prosecution complaint) filed by the Income Tax Department against them in 2018 before a special court in Bengaluru on charges of alleged tax evasion and hawala transactions worth crores.
The Income Tax department has accused Mr Shivakumar, the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee chief, and his alleged associates of transporting huge amounts of unaccounted cash on a regular basis through 'hawala' channels with the help of three other accused.
The Kanakapura MLA played an instrumental role in ensuring the safe stay of Gujarat Congress MLAs in a Karnataka resort during the Rajya Sabha polls in 2017 amid allegations that the BJP was trying to poach them.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi's political secretary, the late Ahmed Patel, had fought the Rajya Sabha election from Gujarat in 2017 and Mr Shivakumar had hosted 44 Gujarat Congress MLAs at the resort to keep the flock together.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)