Yeddy surrenders, jailed for 7 days

Bangalore:  Former Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today surrendered in the sessions court here following rejection of his bail plea by the Lokayukta court. He has been sent to judicial custody for seven days till October 22. A special court hearing land scam cases filed against Mr Yeddyurappa rejected his bail plea earlier in the day and issued an arrest warrant against him. Following this, a three member team of Lokayukta police led by a deputy superintendent of police arrived at the tainted BJP leader Yeddyurappa`s residence with the arrest warrant. An hour later, they left his house as Yeddyurappa was not present there.

The former Chief Minister`s lawyer had earlier said he will approach the High Court for bail and apply for exemption from arrest. "If the High Court says he has to surrender, he will do so," he added. The 63-year-old BJP leader, who faces arrest, did not appear in court today during the bail hearing. He sent a medical certificate saying he was suffering from back pain and sought exemption from personal appearance.

The cases against Mr Yeddyurappa pertain to denotification of land near Bangalore while he was the Chief Minister. He has been accused of illegally denotifying land that had been reserved for projects of public interest to benefit people close to him.The court has also denied bail to former minister S N Krishnaiah Setty, another accused in the case. Mr Yeddyurappa`s two sons, – BJP Lok Sabha member BY Raghavendra and B Y  Vijayendra, and his son-in-law R Sohan Kumar have also been accused of conspiring to denotify land in and around Bangalore in return for monetary gains. They were, however, granted conditional bail today.

Yeddyurappa was forced to resign as Chief Minister of Karnataka on July 31 after a report on illegal mining declared him guilty of accepting kickbacks from companies who were given mining licences. Karnataka`s former Lokayukta, Justice Santosh Hegde, had filed several reports that suggested Mr Yeddyurappa misused his public office fairly often to benefit his friends and family. His prosecution under the Prevention of Corruption Act – on criminal charges – was sanctioned by the Governor, HR Bhardwaj.

The Yeddyurappa drama has put the BJP and especially the Deputy Prime Minister in the NDA government, L K Advani in a fix. Interestingly, Yeddy`s judicial remand came at time when Advani is a nationwide tour on his Chetna Rath to make the voters aware regarding corruption in UPA-2 tenure.