Ahead of Wednesday’s meeting to choose his successor, outgoing CM BS Yeddyurappa moved Karnataka high court to seek quashing of the lokayukta report on illegal mining, and questioned its recommendations to prosecute him under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Hours before lokayukta Santosh Hegde demitted office, BSY also filed a petition with the anti-corruption watchdog seeking a review of its report.
He contended that the stigma attached to him by his indictment would continue to haunt him and pleaded for an opportunity to prove his innocence.
BSY said the lokayukta had not given him a chance to explain his stand.
BSY’s move came as his supporters and detractors herded BJP MLAs into hotels to mop up support for their respective candidates — MP DV Sadanand Gowda and revenue minister Jagdish Shettigar — for Wednesday’s meeting.
Gowda, a Vokkalinga, is a BSY loyalist while Shettar, a Lingayat, is backed by BJP general secretary Ananth Kumar and state BJP chief KS Eshwarappa.
Senior leaders Rajnath Singh and Arun Jaitley returned to Bangalore on Tuesday to push for a compromise between the rival camps, as reported by HT on Monday.
They were proposing that Gowda should become the CM and Shettar take over as his deputy.
Central BJP leaders said a secret ballot among the MLAs would be the last resort, since many of them had given their choice in writing.
In his petition in the HC, BSY prayed for quashing Chapter 22 of the report, which holds him guilty over the financial transactions between South West Mining Company and Prerana Education Society — a trust owned and managed by his family in Shimoga.
He contended that neither the South West Mining Company nor Jindal Steels, whose applications seeking mining leases were pending since 2003, have been involved in mining activity in Karnataka.
According to the Lokayukta findings, South West Mining Company had donated Rs 10 crore to a trust run by BSY’s family, while Jindal Steels purchased an acre of land from BSY’s family for Rs 20 crore, whereas the guidance value fixed by the government was Rs 1.40 crore.
BSY also held that he was not party to the trust into which donation was made.