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Modi Govt Shielding ‘Ballari Gang’, Shut Cases Soon After BSY Became CM Face: Congress

Congress leader Randeep Surjewala said that according to Narendra Modi government, no one stole iron ore worth Rs 35,000 crore.

Updated:April 24, 2018, 8:21 PM IST
Modi Govt Shielding ‘Ballari Gang’, Shut Cases Soon After BSY Became CM Face: Congress
File photo of Gali Janardhana Reddy (left) with former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa. (GETTY IMAGES)
Bengaluru: Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of protecting mining baron G Janardhana Reddy-led "Ballari gang" and BJP's chief ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa, Congress on Tuesday alleged that the CBI closed all cases of illegal mining against them "outlandishly."

CBI shutdown cases against Yeddyurappa, Reddy and his "gang" in connection with the plundering of Rs 35,000 crore worth iron ore in six out of nine ports in four states of Karnataka, Goa, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala alleged.

This happened within 165 days of BJP national president Amit Shah announcing Yeddyurappa as their chief ministerial face in Karnataka elections, Surjewala told reporters here.

"The truth is, according to Modi government, no one stole iron ore of Rs 35,000 crore. Modi government has actually come to the rescue of, what all Kannadigas call, the Ballari gang," he said.

"Karnataka has been betrayed by BJP and its puppet CBI to protect the mining barons," Surjewala said.

He said the Siddaramaiah government handed over the matter to the CBI on November 18, 2013 pertaining to sale and export of iron ore in four states in nine ports. Accoding to him, these ports are Karwar and New Mangalore Port Trust in"Karnataka, Panaji and Mormugao in Goa, Ennore and Chennai in Tamil Nadu and Krishna Patnam, Vishakhapatnam and Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh.

All these nine ports were used to siphon off Karnataka's iron ore, Surjewala added. "On May 27, 2017 as the CBI was examining these cases, BJP national president Amit Shah declares Yeddyurappa as their chief ministerial face in the ensuing Karnataka election. Within days thereafter, on June 13, 2017, CBI writes to Karnataka government saying that there is no criminal case, no iron ore was stolen from the two ports in Goa," he added.

According to Surjewala, CBI closed down cases in Goa ports because the ores of Karnataka and Goa got mixed together. It shut down the criminal cases of iron ore smuggling and stealing for both the ports in Karnataka also without assigning any reason, he alleged.

The cases at two ports of Tamil Nadu were closed because the CBI did not receive the notification from the government and thus it was shut, he said.

"No wonder that Narendra Modi and Amit Shah have gone out of the way to give eight assembly tickets to Reddy brothers and associates, whether it is Gali Karunakara Reddy, Somashekhara Reddy, we all know B Sriramulu, Lallesh Reddy, Suresh Babu, Sanna Fakirappa and Sai Kumar," Surjewala said.

Defending Congress for giving ticket to some mining barons, Surjewala said investigations into these cases were still progressing.
(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat of the state Assemblies in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you put on the psephologist's hat. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections. Elections = News18)
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