Sun, 03 Dec 2023

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], March 27 (ANI): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Madal Virupakshappa has been arrested by the Lokayukta police near Kythasandra toll gate in Tumakuru, in a bribery case, after his bail application was rejected by the Karnataka High Court on Monday.

The BJP MLA was arrested while he was on his way to Bengaluru from Channagiri after attending an event.

Virupakshappa, who was the first accused in the case, was granted interim anticipatory bail by a single-member bench of the High Court.

The High Court on Monday dismissed the main petition filed by the MLA seeking bail.

Lokayukta police started searching for Virupakshappa soon after the High Court verdict was announced.

Several Lokayukta police had started a search, including a house in Bangalore and a house in Channeshpur (Madal) in Channagiri.

Virupakshappa, who had left Channagiri, was coming to Bengaluru just as the High Court order came out.

A team of Lokayukta police officials stopped the MLA's car near the Kyathsandra toll gate in Tumakuru. The BJP MLA was arrested and brought to Bengaluru.

Lokayukta sources said, "Preparations are being made to interrogate MLAs as there is a lot of information to be obtained regarding the case."The Supreme Court on March 14 agreed to hear the Karnataka Lokayukta plea against the High Court's decision to grant anticipatory bail to BJP MLA Madal Virupakshappa in a corruption case.

The counsel appearing for Karnataka Lokayukta mentioned his plea and sought an urgent hearing of his appeal against anticipatory bail granted to BJP MLA.

Notably, BJP MLA Madal Virupakshappa whose son was arrested while he was taking a bribe of Rs 40 lakh on March 3, appeared before Lokayukta in Bengaluru on Match 9.

Anti-corruption branch of Lokayukta had arrested his son Prashanth Madal for bribery of Rs 40 lakh.

Initially, the lawyer mentioned the plea before the bench headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, who asked the petitioner to go before another bench headed by Justice SK Kaul.

CJI said, "He is the part of a constitution bench who is hearing a different matter so they will not be able to take up Karnataka Lokayukta matter."When the lawyer mentioned his plea before a bench headed by SK Kaul, the judge said, "What was the urgency for listing of the plea?"The lawyer replied and said, "The accused is a sitting legislator." Thereafter, Justice Kaul directed to list the matter at the earliest.

"The anti-corruption branch of Lokayukta caught Prashanth Madal, son of BJP MLA Madal Virupakshappa while taking a bribe of Rs 40 lakh. Over Rs 1.7 crore in cash was recovered from his office," Karnataka Lokayukta had earlier said.

Lokayukta was on duty after getting a complaint about the demand for a bribe. Over Rs 1.7 crore cash was found at Prashanth Madal's office, Lokayukta officials said.

Speaking to reporters, Virupakshappa said that the money found in the raid was his "earned money".

"It was our earned money. I have not done any illegal transactions as president of KSDL. We kept the money from our groundnut plantation and crusher at home. This money was discovered during the Lokayukta raid. I have a document for that money and I will give it," he said.

He further said that he would not quit the party even after the party expelled him from the primary membership.

"However, I will not quit the BJP. I will prove my innocence in the case and I will get a clean chit in a legal battle. BJP is my mother party," he added. (ANI)

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