Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Wednesday denied he had asked prison officials to give special amenities to jailed All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader VK Sasikala, PTI reported.
The Anti-Corruption Bureau is investigating the case after a prison report, in July 2017, claimed that Sasikala had paid Rs 2 crore in bribe to senior police officers for preferential treatment at the Parappana Agrahara Central Prison. During inquiry, the former police chief for prisons, HN Sathyanarayana Rao, had reportedly said he had got instructions from the chief minister to give her a cot, a mattress and a pillow in the prison.
The report, submitted by state Deputy Inspector General (Prisons) D Roopa, had accused Rao of giving Sasikala special facilities. Sasikala was convicted in February 2017 in an illegal assets case and sentenced to four years in jail.
“A delegation from Tamil Nadu had come to me stating that Sasikala was not even given a mat and pillow,” Siddaramaiah said. “I asked him [the prisons chief] to see what help can be done according to the jail manual. I had not asked [him] to give special amenities. I had said – give a mat and pillow if it is allowed under the jail manual.”
He said Rao was making baseless allegations because the state government had ordered an inquiry into alleged irregularities in the prisons department.
State Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy, however, contradicted Siddaramiah, and said the state government gave Sasikala a cot, a mattress and a pillow based on a doctor’s advice, The Hindu reported. “There is a 100-bed hospital within the jail premises,” Reddy said. “Sasikala had health issues and the decision to provide her with a bed and pillow was on medical advice.”