On Wednesday morning, Karnataka’s energy minister, DK Shivakumar’s residence was raided by the Income Tax (I-T) officials. Moments later, there were reports of I-T officials raiding the Eagleton Golf Resort, where 44 of the Congress Gujarat MLAs are being kept.
Releasing a fresh statement over the raids, the I-T department said that the searches being carried out are a mere evidence-gathering exercise and the timings of the raids were planned well in advance.
— NewsX (@NewsX) August 2, 2017
The raids began as early as 7AM on Wednesday morning. The Karnataka energy minister DK Shivakumar was in-charge of hospitality for the Gujarat Congress MLAs at the Eagleton Golf Resort, Bengaluru.
Terming the I-T raids as BJP’s depression, Senior Congress leader, Ahmed Patel said, “BJP is on an unprecedented witch-hunt just to win 1 Rajya Sabha seat.”
Congress’ nominee Patel said that after using state machinery and every other agency BJP has now resorted to raids.
After using state machinery & every other agency, these I-T raids show their utter desperation & frustration: Ahmed Patel,Senior Cong leader
— ANI (@ANI_news) August 2, 2017
Soon after the raids were carried out, senior Congress leader, Randeep Surjewala called a press conference terming the raids as a conspiracy against the Congress party.
Talking to reporters, Surjewala said, “BJP has used every dirty and ugly trick to run a conspiracy to win Rajya Sabha seat in Gujarat.”
Earlier on July 29, the Congress had segregated 44 of its MLAs from Gujarat at a private resort in Bengaluru, Eagleton Golf Resort, ahead of crucial Rajya Sabha elections in which Ahmed Patel, political secretary to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, is seeking to return to the Upper House.
The Congress has accused BJP President Amit Shah of engineering defections in Gujarat by “money and muscle power”.
As per reports, Congress President Sonia Gandhi had decided to keep a close vigilance on the MLAs and thus many of their phones were put on switched off mode. This had led to restlessness among the segregated MLAs in the resort.
Following the developments, DK Shivakumar, who was on a trip to Singapore, had to cut short his trip and was rushed to Bengaluru to be in-charge of the hospitality of the Congress MLAs.