CEC report biased, says Reddy, Can`t act now says CM

Last Updated: Saturday, January 8, 2011 - 00:26

Bellary: Giving a twist to the illegal
mining issue, Karnataka minister and mining magnate G
Janardhana Reddy on Friday accused the Centre of launching
"vindictive action" against him, his brother and Jaganmohan
Reddy to "finish them".

Reddy`s charge came at a hurriedly called press
conference here after he came under fresh attack from
Opposition over a Supreme Court appointed committee indicting
companies owned by him and his brother Karunakara Reddy for
illegal mining.
"The Centre has launched a vindictive action against
us after the death of Rajasekhara Reddy," he claimed alleging
a conspiracy to "finish us and also Jagan" with whom he has
business links.

The Reddy brothers were known for their reported
proximity to the family of Rajasekhara Reddy months after
whose death Jaganmohan Reddy deserted the Congress after
unsuccessful bid to succeed his father.

Reddy dubbed the panel report, submitted to the apex
court today, as "biased" and "prejudiced" and alleged "it had
been compiled under pressure."

Reddy said, "there is a political hand behind this CEC
report. I will disclose the name of this political power in a
couple of days".

The Reddy brothers have been facing opposition heat in
Karnataka for their alleged involvement in illegal mining in
Bellary District over which the Congress staged a padayatra
last year.
The SC-appointed committee had recommended
cancellation of mining lease to the Reddy brothers` firms in
Andhra Pradesh, saying their Obulapuram Mining Company had
openly flouted various environmental laws in mining operations
and also indulged in illegal mining beyond approved area.

The high-powered panel recommended cancellation of the
lease to four different mines spread over 140 acres on grounds
of among others, large scale illegal mining in Karnataka`s
Bellary Reserve Forest area.

As the Opposition Congress and JDS upped their ante
demanding the immediate resignation of Reddy brothers from the
ministry, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa turned it down saying
"how can there be an action before the Supreme Court verdict?"

Yeddyurappa initially refused to react to the CEC
report saying "I don`t know the details. I will comment on the
report after Supreme Court takes a final decision."

Opposition Congress leader Siddaramaiah, KPCC
president G Parameshwara and JDS leader H D Kumarswamy
demanded that Yeddyurappa and Reddy brothers resign.

Congress spokesman V S Ugrappa alleged the mining
companies owned by Reddy brothers had caused a loss of Rs
3,154 crore to the state exchequer by their illegal mining
from 2005-06 to 2009-10.

"The chief minister is protecting these ministers
probably because he got an indirect share from them," Ugrappa
charged.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, January 8, 2011 - 00:26

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