Bengaluru: Union minister Prakash Javadekar on Friday demanded immediate removal of Karnataka minister KJ George, booked by the CBI in connection with the mysterious death of a police official, for a fair investigation.
Javadekar also slammed Chief Minister Siddaramaiah for backing George, saying defending the indefensible was the "Congress's culture".
The chief minister had earlier on Friday said there was no case warranting resignation of George and that it was a politically motivated case to tarnish the image of George and the government.
The CBI, which has been directed by the Supreme Court to take over the case, had on on Thursday filed an FIR naming George and two others in connection with the mysterious death of DSP MK Ganapathy in 2016.
The Union HRD minister said that instead of acting against George, who is the accused number one in the death of Ganapathy, "he (chief minister) is presenting a bizarre logic to defend him".
Claiming that it was an "open and shut case", Javadekar said George was home minister when Ganapathy had levelled the charge.
Also, the apex court had in its order said the police official, soon before his death, had specifically named three respondents that he apprehended could pose a threat to his life, the Union minister said.
"The statement made by Ganapathy is like a dying declaration," said Javadekar.
The minister pointed out that the 'B' report by the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) was submitted before the forensic report.
"The forensic report mentions that photos, messages, call details... all were deleted. Instead of taking action and sacking George from the ministry, he (the chief minister) is defending him," he said.
"This is the Congress's culture. It defends every accused. It defends black money. It defends everything that is bad," Javadekar alleged.
He also flayed state ministers HM Revanna, Ramesh Kumar and Karnataka State Planning board deputy chairman CM Ibrahim for allegedly attributing motives to the Supreme Court, which had ordered a probe by the CBI.
"They are attributing motives to the Supreme Court. What extent the Congress can go to defend the indefensible! This is the callousness of the Congress. That is why people are angry and that is why the Congress has lost all over. And it will lose in Karnataka too (in the Assembly polls)," he said.
He claimed that the apex court had trashed the 'B' report submitted by the CID, which gave George a clean chit.
Javadekar said the Supreme Court had taken note of the statement of the complainant's counsel that it could be a case of murder, though they had earlier learnt it to be a suicide.
The CBI had on Thursday filed an FIR against George and two IPS officials over the death of Ganapathy, who was found hanging from a ceiling fan in a room of a lodge in Madikeri on 7 July last year.
Before his death, he had given an interview to a local TV channel and had said the then-home minister George and two senior police officers AM Prasad and Pranov Mohanty would be responsible "if anything happens to me".
The state CID investigated the case and gave a clean chit to George and the two officers in its 'B' (closure) report filed before a court in Madikeri.
George had resigned soon after a court directed police to register an FIR against him and two police officers. After his name was cleared by the CID, he was re-inducted into the cabinet.
The Supreme Court had in September allowed the appeal of MK Kushalappa, father of the deceased police officer, against the Karnataka High Court order rejecting his plea for a CBI probe into the death.
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Updated Date: Oct 28, 2017 10:07:07 IST