Cong demands resignation of Forest Min over fraud

Bangalore: The opposition Congress on Thursday demanded the resignation of Forest Minister C P Yogeeshwara as it vigorously sought a discussion in the Legislative Assembly on the Rs 37 crore alleged fraud by his real estate company.

In his preliminary submission seeking to move an adjournment motion, Leader of Opposition Siddaramaiah (Congress) referred to the charge-sheet filed by the CID and stressed the need for a detailed discussion.

"After the chargesheet, he (Yogeeshwara) should not remain in Government. He can he remain in government when there are cases of fraud, forgery and misappropriation against him?", Siddaramaiah asked.

Deputy Floor Leader of Congress T B Jayachandra questioned the continuation in the Government of the "tainted" Minister and sought discussion, along with another senior Congress members D K Shivakumar.

Kumar said the Government is ready for a discussion after the debate on budget if the Opposition brought it up in the House under a different format (not an adjournment motion), a contention upheld by the Speaker K G Bopaiah.

Bopaiah also suggested to the Congress to raise the matter as a calling attention notice, adding, he would also give permission if it's discussed under a different rule, while disallowing the adjournment motion.

Last month, the actor-turned politician was charged with corporate fraud, forgery and cheating investors of Rs 37 crore by promising them sites in his private township by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office of the Union Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

The report of the SFIO, which investigated complaints against the Megacity (Bangalore) Developers and Builders Ltd., of which Yogeeshwara is managing director, accused him of indulging in corporate fraud, criminal conspiracy, forgery and cheating.

The SFIO found him guilty of forging about 450 sale agreements to falsely show that about Rs 37 crore was paid to landowners towards purchase of their land for the company's project.

CID had filed chargesheet against him in March 2010 for the alleged cheating of more than 9,000 investors of Rs 37 crore by promising them sites at a private township developed by his firm during 1995-2006.