Karnataka BJP MLA Madal Virupakshappa, who got pre-arrest bail in a corruption case from the High Court today, received a hero's welcome at his home town in Davangere. The MLA had gone missing for five days after his son was arrested along with four others while taking a bribe of Rs 40 lakh.
Visuals from the spot showed a huge cheering, slogan-shouting crowd walking alongside the MLA's car. The MLA, riding the car with a sun roof, smiled and waved as they burst crackers.
Madal Virupakshappa was named as the prime accused in the case after his son Prashanth Madal was caught allegedly accepting bribe on his behalf last month.
The bribe was to meant to secure a tender to supply raw materials to Karnataka Soaps and Detergents Ltd (KSDL), where the MLA was the chairman, said the Lokayukta police, which is investigating the case.
Bundles of cash was recovered from his home by the investigators on March 2. The next day, the Channagiri MLA stepped down from the chairman post.
Shortly after, as he went missing, the Youth Congress put up "missing" posters across the state.
The case revived the multiple allegations of corruption against the Basavaraj Bommai government ahead of the elections due this year, proving a handle to the opposition Congress.
Last year, the Congress had launched a mock campaign PayCM to highlight allegations that the ruling BJP was extracting 40 per cent commission from builders, contractors and others. The bribe apparently had to be paid for projects across departments.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, whose closest aide and former Deputy Manish Sisodia has been arrested in a corruption case, took a swipe at the BJP.
"Mr. Prime Minister Nothing was found in the raid from Manish Sisodia's house. Arrested them by applying all the sections of CBI, ED. Your party's MLA found so much cash here, he was not arrested? Now don't ever talk about fighting corruption. Doesn't look good on your face," read a rough translation of his tweet in Hindi.
प्रधान मंत्री जी,— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) March 7, 2023
मनीष सिसोदिया के घर से रेड में कुछ नहीं मिला। उन पर CBI, ED की सारी धारायें लगाकर गिरफ़्तार कर लिया। आपकी पार्टी के MLA के यहाँ इतना कैश मिला, उसकी गिरफ़्तारी नहीं?
अब आप कभी भी भ्रष्टाचार से लड़ने की बात तो मत ही करना। आपके मुँह से अच्छा नहीं लगता। https://t.co/dZtU5krIXl
AAP has claimed that the arrest of Mr Sisodia in connection with the now-withdrawn liquor policy, is the BJP's political retaliation for its failure to get the mandate in Delhi and Punjab.