Karnataka Chief Minister Accused Of Alerting Offenders Before Income Tax Raids

Karnataka Chief Minister Accused Of Alerting Offenders Before Income Tax Raids

Karnataka Chief Minister Accused Of Alerting Offenders Before Income Tax Raids (file image)

New Delhi: A complaint against Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy has been filed by Income Tax department which accused him of breaking his oath of office by alerting financial offenders to impending raids.

Sanjiv Kumar, the Chief Electoral Officer of Karnataka has forwarded the complaint, filed by Director General of Investigation (Income Tax) BR Balakrishnan, to State Director General and Inspector General of Police Neelamani Raju for "appropriate action".

The four-page complaint, dated March 30, alleges that "Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy as well as other ministers and prominent leaders of the ruling coalition posed a threat to Income Tax officials by protesting at its Bengaluru headquarters against raids undertaken on contractors and other tax offenders". It further sought a CRPF contingent for assistance in search operations as well as follow-up actions.

Mr Balakrishnan referred to a statement issued on March 27, a day ahead of the Income Tax raids, and alleged that the Chief Minister had "broken his oath of office by alerting tax evaders". The raids, conducted on the residences of government contractors and engineers in Mysuru, Mandya and Hassan, yielded jewellery as well as cash amounting to Rs. 2.11 crore.

The chief minister of Karnataka had claimed that he is being targeted by the Income Tax department as well as the Election Commission, with investigators regularly waylaying his vehicle to conduct searches. He also alleged that attempts were made by Income Tax officials to raid his son Nikhil Gowda's hotel room in Mandya. The Chief Minister questioned, "Where are they going with all these raids? Why do they stoop so low in politics?" 

Nikhil Gowda is the Congress-Janata Dal (United) candidate from Mandya.

Dinesh Gundu Rao, the President of Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee said that the Income Tax department's credibility has received a blow, given how Mr Balakrishnan was "acting on the instructions of a political party".