Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy has gone on protest at the I-T department office in Bengaluru hours after officials swooped down on many JD(S) leaders across Gowda strongholds of Hassan and Mandya districts, starting from early hours.
He was flanked by several Congress leaders, including his deputy G Parameshwara, former chief minister Siddaramaiah and DK Shivakumar, besides his ministerial colleagues. As from these two districts two grand sons of former Prime Minister Deve Gowda Prajwala and Nikhil are contesting in Lok Sabha polls, chief minister dubbed these raids as `politically motivated’.
Furious Kumaraswamy has blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the raids. In a tweet he has levelled serious charges against Karnataka-Goa IT commissioner Balakrishnan, saying that he is harassing BJP’s political opponents for a post retirement Constitutional post. He alleged that the officer was promised a Governor post, after his retirement in three months.
Terming the raids as PM Modi’s “real surgical strike”, the CM had warned he would use tactics like Mamata Banerjee against any move by the centre to use the government’s organs for political vendetta.
Meanwhile, Kumaraswamy’s elder brother and PWD minister H D Revanna has launched a blistering attack on I-T department and the Prime Minister. Condemning the IT raids, he said, “Who is Modi? Deve Gowda is not scared of him. Our people will show them their right place. We will follow Mamata Banerjee’s model if the BJP does not IT raids”.
According to reports, more than 300 I-T officials are conducting raids on the offices and houses owned by the businessmen and contractors close to JDS. The angry JDS supporters are protesting blocking the Bengaluru-Mysore highway.