Won’t let conspirators go unpunished: R Jarakiholi on sleaze CD

Karnataka former minister Ramesh Jarakiholi, who was forced to quit the cabinet last week after an alleged CD leaked last week, on Tuesday said that ‘he will not spare the leader’ who conspired to malign his family reputation by bringing out this ‘fake CD’ in public.

In a hurriedly convened press conference here, Jarakiholi said he was innocent and alleged that he had become a victim of a political vendetta and he knew a leader who was behind all this, though he refused to name him.

“I have the highest regards for political leaders of all parties. Even former Karnataka CM, H.D. Kumaraswamy and his elder brother H.D. Revanna have spoken with me after this CD was released which is besides my Chief Minister, B.S. Yediyurappa speaking to me sympathetically,” he explained.

On repeated queries, he said that he would stick to his brother and Karnataka Milk Federation chairman, Balachandra Jarakiholi’s statement that this conspiracy was hatched by nine persons, including a woman. “This is hatched by first two persons including a woman, then three more came into this and finally four more joined to release it,” he said.

He further alleged that this conspiracy was hatched against his family in two places. “First they met on the fifth floor of a hotel next to Orion Mall while the second time they met in a hotel in Yeshwanthpur on the fourth floor. I know many more details, but I will not reveal it now,” the beleaguered leader explained.

Sounding a warning to all conspirators, he said, “One thing is assured from my side and it is that I am not bothered about any consequences from now on but will see to it that the main culprit is punished legally.”

He also added that the family came to know about a conspiracy being hatched against him at least four months ago and even a well wisher of his at the party high command had tipped him off 26 hours before the video was released. “I did not take it seriously as I knew it was a fake video. I am not guilty of indulging in such an act. My conscience is very clear,” he said.

According to him, the conspirators have paid Rs 5 crore to the woman and two flats in one of the gulf countries. “He (Balachandra Jarakiholi) may have said it was Rs 50 lakh paid to a woman, it is not correct, five crore cash was paid to her and two flats in gulf countries. They have invested more than Rs 20 crore to execute this fake CD scam against me only to tarnish my family reputation,” he explained.

Jarakiholi also claimed that resigning from the cabinet was ‘his own decision’ as he did not want his party (Bharatiya Janata Party) to get embarrassed.

“Resignation is my decision. I waited one night before resignation to see the outcome (of the allegations). CM (Yediyurappa) didn’t ask me (to resign). I gave the resignation myself. I don’t want the party to be embarrassed. I resigned the next morning at 9.30 a.m. and it came into public domain only at 1.30 p.m.,” he claimed.

“(There’s) No truth in this CD. It’s a conspiracy. I am innocent. I got to know about CD four months ago. I had also told my brother about it and that I have done nothing wrong. It’s not me. I also got a call from the high command, saying this might happen and take legal help. Even then I said I will fight the allegations,” Jarkiholi said.

Answering to a question, Jarakiholi said that he would leave it to his younger brother (Balachandra Jarakiholi) to take decisions in this matter. “I am with him whatever decision he takes to restore our family’s honour. My first and primary aim is to restore my family reputation even if it costs my political future,” he said.

Ramesh Jarkiholi had resigned on March 3 from the state cabinet, following a complaint by social activist Dinesh Kallahalli in which he alleged that he had sexually harassed a ‘job aspirant’ and threatened the woman and her family with dire consequences.

Just four days after the complaint was filed on March 7, Kallahalli released a five page letter to the media that addressed the police that he was withdrawing his complaint against the minister as he was being portrayed as a villain by politicians.

After this episode, Agriculture Minister B.C. Patil, Urban Development Minister Byrathi Basavaraj, Health Minister K. Sudhakar, Labour Minister Shivaram Hebbar, Cooperation Minister S.T. Somashekar, and Youth Empowerment and Sports Minister Narayan Gowda moved the court on Friday and on Saturday the court granted ex-parte order to restrain 68 media houses from publishing unverified or defamatory content against them.