Congress MP D K Suresh today met his brother Karnataka Minister D K Shivakumar, who is facing the heat of the Income Tax department raid, and said his blood pressure has gone up due to lack of sleep for the last two days.
Congress MP D K Suresh today met his brother Karnataka Minister D K Shivakumar, who is facing the heat of the Income Tax department raid, and said his blood pressure has gone up due to lack of sleep for the last two days. Suresh, who was earlier in the day denied permission by I-T officials to meet his brother, was later allowed to do so as he expressed concerns over Shivakumar’s health. “I saw reports on TV about his health. I was worried. So I came back and asked officials for permission to meet my brother. Though initially, they did not agree, after consulting higher officials they allowed me to meet my brother for 10 minutes in their presence,” he told reporters here. “He (Shivakumar) has been asked to take rest. For the last two days, he did not get any sleep. His blood pressure had increased. Officials said after giving him rest for two hours they will collect further information from him and try to complete searches by today or tomorrow,” Suresh said. “I feel that they may conclude the searches today, don’t know at what time,” the Bengaluru Rural MP added.
During searches at about 66 places across the country in connection with the case of alleged tax evasion, I-T officials said they have seized cash and jewellery worth over Rs 15 crore so far. Informing mediapersons that he personally spoke to Shivakumar, Suresh said, “I enquired about his health, he is comfortable now. The doctor has advised rest for two days, but still he will cooperate with the officials.” Shivakumar, who hails from the Vokkaliga community, has considerable influence in Bengaluru Rural and neighbouring Ramanagara districts. He is also the Congress’ propaganda committee chief ahead of the 2018 Assembly polls.
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The 55-year-old minister, considered a resourceful trouble shooter for the Congress with proximity to the party high command, is a six-time MLA. He has been put in charge of 44 Gujarat Congress MLAs lodged in the Eagleton resort near here to keep the flock together and prevent the BJP from “poaching” on them ahead of the Rajya Sabha polls in Gujarat where Ahmed Patel, political secretary to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, is facing a tough battle. Suresh said he has requested I-T officials to make public facts about the searches, as the media is creating confusion among people, party leaders and Shivakumar’s supporters. He said, “Officials have told me that they have so far not communicated anything to the media and they will submit a report to government and the department after concluding the searches. Shivakumar will also be given the opportunity to give his version.”
Earlier speaking to the media after he was denied permission to meet Shivakumar, Suresh had said he wanted to meet his brother and family members on the occasion of Varamahalakshmi puja today. Meanwhile, speaking to a local news channel, Shivakumar’s mother Gowramma accused Chief Minister Siddaramaiah of “betraying” her son.
“He (Siddaramaiah) has come up (in politics) because of my son, today he has malice against my son. But we can’t say anything as the elections are fast approaching. Let him and the BJP wait and watch,” she said. Asked whether she suspects the chief minister’s hand behind the I-T raids, she said, “There may be”. On Gowramma’s remarks, Siddaramaiah said he did not want to react on it.