In a predawn swoop on Thursday, Income Tax officials along with CRPF personnel carried out raids at the residences of Karnataka Minor Irrigation Minister CS Puttaraju and his nephew.
Speaking to a private news channel, JD(S) leader Puttaraju said three teams of Income Tax officials and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel carried out raids at his Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and his nephew’s house in Mysuru.
The development came a day after Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy raised fears about possible raids on Congress and JD(S) functionaries in the state.
He had claimed that CRPF personnel were brought from various parts of the country to carry out the raids.
Raids on Congress and JD(S) leaders can take place early Thursday morning using CRPF jawans instead of taking the help of the Karnataka Police in order to maintain secrecy, Kumaraswamy had said on Wednesday.
“Three teams of I-T officials and CRPF soldiers comprising eight soldiers carried out raids at my Chinnakurli residence in Mandya and my nephew’s residence in Mysuru,” Puttaraju told the channel.
The minister said he was not afraid of the raids and instead, it had instilled confidence in him.
“I’m not deterred by the raids, which are election related. I would like to know which BJP leader’s house in Karnataka has been raided,” Puttaraju, who is in-charge minister of Mandya district, said.
Kumaraswamy accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of playing a “revenge game”. He said Modi’s “real surgical strike is out in the open through IT department raids”.
The chief minister had on Wednesday warned that he would follow what his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Bannerjee did to counter the ‘misuse’ of central agencies.
Banerjee had staged a “Save the Constitution” dharna from February 3 to 5 in Kolkata after the CBI’s failed bid to question Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar in connection with chit fund cases.
He had also accused Modi of misusing the Income Tax department to threaten the JD(S) and Congress leaders in Karnataka during election time.
(With PTI inputs)