Bengaluru: Karnataka water resources minister Ramesh Jarkiholi on Tuesday landed thick in the middle of a controversy when a social activist approached the Bengaluru police commissioner Kamal Pant and demanded a detailed probe into an alleged sex scandal involving the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator.
Post-meeting with the commissioner, activist Dinesh Kallahalli released a CD of Jarkiholi, showing the latter with a woman in her 30s allegedly seeking sexual favours from her on the pretext of giving her a government job. The video widely flashed across Kannada TV channels soon after.
Police sources said they are investigating the veracity of the CD, and that it is not yet known when it was shot. First information report (FIR) has not been filed as the woman has not come forward to complain so far.
In his complaint to the police, Kallahalli said: “Since I am into social activism, the woman’s family approached me with the complaint and the CD and shared all the details. Please investigate the truth of the matter, file a criminal case against the minister and provide protection to the victim.”
The complaint stated that the woman had approached the minister for shooting a documentary and remained in touch later. In one meeting, Ramesh Jarkiholi allegedly asked for sexual favours in return for a job at the Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Ltd.
However, Ramesh Jarkiholi denied all charges against him and that the videos in the CD have been edited to tarnish his image. “The investigation will bring all truths out,” he said. Jarkiholi is one of the 17 MLA’s in the Congress-JD (S) alliance, who defected to the BJP in 2019.