Bangalore: In a major setback for former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa, a CBI court in Bangalore on Wednesday rejected the anticipatory bail applications moved by him and his family members apprehending arrest in the illegal mining case registered by the CBI against them.
The Lingayat community leader`s arrest now looks eminent after the court`s rejection of his bail application.
CBI judge DR Venkat Sudarshan had last week reserved its orders on the anticipatory bail applications of Yeddyurappa, his sons BY Raghavendra and BY Vijendra and son-in-law RN Sohan Kumar after conclusion of arguments by CBI counsel Ashok Bhan and senior counsel Ashok Haranahally for the former chief minister.
The CBI has registered an FIR against Yeddyurappa and others after the Supreme Court on May 11 and directed it to probe charges of granting undue favours to firms involved in illegal mining in lieu of donations to a charitable trust run by his kin.
Subsequently, the CBI held raids at the residential and other premises of Yeddyurappa and others.
Bhan, quoting case diaries placed before the court, submitted Rs 20 crore was transferred by Jindal Steel Works (JSW) to Prerana Educational and Social Trust, run by Yeddyurappa`s sons.
This was subsequently transferred to Vivekananda Trust, of which Yeddyurappa is a trustee.
The CBI, he said, was probing charges of conspiracy cheating, corruption and violation of Karnataka Land (Restriction on Transfer) Act, 1991, registered against Yeddyurappa, his sons, son-in-law, JSW and others on a directive by the Supreme Court.
Bhan further submitted that after Yeddyurappa demitted office as chief minister and prior to his tenure, no contribution was made to the Prerana Trust.
"The donations are quid pro quo for Jindal," he submitted.
The Supreme Court direction to the CBI to probe the case was the "bedrock" on which this probe had been initiated and as per Article 141 and 144 of the Constitution, all subordinate courts must assist the Supreme Court, Bhan stated.
He also said outstanding dues amounting to Rs 917 crore which had to be collected from various mining firms and paid to the government-run Mysore Minerals Limited (MML), was not collected.
Bhan submitted that 1.20 acres of land was denotified by the government and later sold by Yeddyurappa`s family members to South West Mining Company for pecuniary gain.
The whole process of denotification and sale of the land involved "forgery and falsification (of documents) and there is it is necessary that CBI further investigate the matter.
Haranahally, a former Advocate General, submitted that there was nothing wrong in donations to a Trust which was set up public welfare and the trustees are not direct beneficiaries of donations to the Trust.
He also submitted that denotification and sale of the said land was authorised by the Bangalore Development Authority and was legal.
(With PTI Inputs)