Karnataka IT raids: EC seeks report from finance ministry on Congress complaint

Referring to the Income Tax Department (IT) raid at the Bengaluru resort where 44 Gujarat MLAs are staying, Kharge said it was done deliberately to "terrorise the MLAs so that they do not support the Congress candidate (Ahmed Patel)".

Refuting Congress Party's claim, IT department has denied that its raid at Shivakumar's residence and a private resort has anything to do with the Gujarat's Congress MLAs.

Meanwhile, the Congress has condemned the Income Tax (IT) department raids and alleged that it is "dirty and ugly" trick of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to win the Rajya Sabha seat in Gujarat.

The IT department raided rooms at the Eagleton Resort near Bengaluru this morning, where 44 Congress MLAs from Gujarat are now residing.

Karnataka Energy Minister Shivakumar had been given charge of the lawmakers who were brought to the Bengaluru resort.

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The Income Tax department has recovered a total amount of Rs. 10 crore, including Rs. 2.5 crore from Bengaluru. "After using the state machinery and every other agency, these I-T raids show their utter desperation & frustration", he added.

According to the Congress sources, all expenses of MLAs who had travelled to Bangalore were being made by the Gujarat Pradesh Congress committee (GPCC) and the Karnataka Government was not involved whatsoever.

Congress has also accused the incumbent Gujarat government of trying to lure 22 Congress lawmakers by offering Rs 15 crores and asking them to cross vote during the polls.

Jaitley, while addressing the Lok Sabha, said that the raids are being conducted purely on economic front. It said the searches were part of an evidence-gathering exercise.

In the face of recent defections in Gujarat ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections, the Congress has approached the Supreme Court in an attempt to stop the use of the "none of the above" (NOTA) option in next week's polls.

The raids commenced at 7 am today at all the places simultaneously.


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