I-T department on Wednesday raided Karnataka minister DK Shivakumar and Eagleton Resort in Bengaluru where Gujarat Congress MLAs were staying.
The Congress party has termed the raid on Gujarat MLAs an “unprecedented witch hunt” while other opposition parties have accused “frustrated” BJP of doing “vendetta politics” ahead of Gujarat Rajya Sabha elections.
However, the BJP has said I-T raids have no connection with Gujarat RS elections neither with the Congress who are staying in Eagleton Resort. But this clearly is not as simple as it is being told by the BJP.
According to a report published in The Hindu, two of the 44 Congress MLAs claimed that IT department sleuths has asked some of them to leave the resort and return to Gujarat.
“Two of our members were told by I-T officials to leave the resort and return to Gujarat immediately,” The Hindu quoted Congress legislators Paresh Dhanani and Mohammad Javed Pirzada as saying.
The MLAs also claimed that the IT officials were more concerned about the reason why they are staying at the resort and who are paying their bills.
“As soon as the I-T team reached the resort, they took hold of the reception counter and asked the staff about guests staying in the rooms, who was paying for them, and who had done the booking for them,” it added.
Earlier, Cabinet minister Arun Jaitley has said that “no search has taken place in the resort as such and no MLA was searched, only one particular Karnataka minister was searched.”
Of the 57 Congress MLAs in Gujarat, six had resigned from the party in the last two weeks. Three of them joined the BJP. After that Congress has sent 44 MLAs from Gujarat to Bengaluru as part of a strategy to keep them together.
Congress needs the votes of 45 MLAs to elect senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel to the Rajya Sabha in polls to be held on August 8.