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Former Karnataka Minister KS Eshwarappa Cleared in Contractor Suicide Case

Eshwarappa had resigned from the Karnataka cabinet amid allegations against him in connection with the suicide.

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India
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Edited By :Ahamad Fuwad

Former Karnataka minister KS Eshwarappa, whose name was embroiled in the case of the alleged suicide of contractor Santhosh Patil, was cleared in the investigation by the police on Wednesday, 20 July.

The contractor died by suicide on 12 April in a lodge in Karnataka's Udupi. A day later, charges were levelled against Eshwarappa for alleged abetment of suicide of the Belagavi-based contractor, who had accused the then minister of corruption.

"My name (in) Santosh's suicide case has been cleared. I have no role in his death. I am very happy that the probing agency has cleared my name," Eshwarappa said in a statement.
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The former rural development and panchayat raj (RDPR) minister in the Karnataka Cabinet had on 15 April tendered his resignation to Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai amid the allegations.

Speaking on his decision to quit after being cleared of the charges, Eshwarappa said, "Many seniors and workers in the party called me when (I) tendered my resignation. They assured me that justice will prevail. Many Swamijis and people from spiritual background visited me and filled (me) with courage (during) difficult times."

Background

Santhosh Patil, who hailed from Hindalaga in Belagavi, had been missing since 11 April. A day later, his body was found in a lodge in Udupi. The contractor had died by suicide as per preliminary investigations.

Patil had earlier accused Eshwarappa of asking for a bribe of 40 percent of the total cost of a project, demanding a commission to the tune of Rs 4 crore for the construction of a road in Belagavi's Higaldo village.

A case was registered by the Udupi Police under Indian Penal Code Section 306 (abetment to suicide), naming Eshwarappa and two of his aides – Basavaraj and Ramesh. The FIR was based on a complaint lodged by the brother of the deceased contractor.
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As furore erupted over the minister's involvement in the case, the Congress party held large protests demanding Eshwarappa's resignation and demanding a judicial probe.

Following this, Eshwarappa resigned from the state cabinet despite initial defiance by the Bharatiya Janata Party's top brass in the state, including Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai.

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Topics:  KARNATAKA   KS Eshwarappa 

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