Excise minister Mr Meti, 71, is well thought-out to be a close companion of Mr Siddaramaiah and belongs to the Kuruba community like the Chief Minister.
Bengaluru: Close on the heels of primary and secondary education minister, Tanveer Sait apparently viewing immoral clippings on his mobile, a senior minister in the CM Siddaramaiah Cabinet has landed in a major controversy for apparently seeking sexual favours from a woman working in the Ayush department.
Excise minister, H. Y. Meti, 71, is well thought-out to be a close companion of Mr Siddaramaiah and belongs to the Kuruba community like the Chief Minister. He is the only other Kuruba in the cabinet.
Television channels ran different types of the story with one channel showing the woman, with a moderately masked face, appealing to be the one in the alleged CD, which appeared on a private Kannada channel stating Excise minister Mr Meti demanded sexual favours in return for carrying out a transfer in his department.
On another channel, a woman named Vijaylakshmi took the news anchor to task for unreasonably dragging her name and that of the minister into the scandal. “I know him personally, he is not like that. You (anchor) cannot blame him of such a scandal that, too linking my name with him,” she shot back, when the anchor sought her response, with the suspect minister too on another telephone line.
Previously, Mr Meti had got involved in another controversy after RTI activist from Ballari, Rajashekar Molali, released an audio file of a phone conversation he had with a person named Subash, who appealed to be close to Mr Meti. In this conversation, Mr Subash frequently refers to a video CD of the minister’s sexual incidents and threatens Mr Molali that this should not be released.
Mr Subhash also offers to resolve the crisis by offering a monetary deal to prevent release of the CD.
In the meantime speaking to reporters in Ballari after filing a complaint with the police, Mr Molali stated, “I do not have the CD. I think the matter required to come out in the public and the minister should resign. I am not associated with any political party, I am an anti-corruption activist and a follower of Anna Hazare,” he contended.
In the meantime, responding cautiously, KPCC president, Dr G. Parameshwar stated the party will take action if the charges against the minister are found valid. “Let the investigations be completed and the truth come out, I do not wish to make any comment against the minister,” he stated.
Speaking to reporters in his home district, Bagalakote, Excise minister Mr Meti denied the allegations. “I am ready for any type of investigation. Let them release the CD. I have not done anything wrong. I don’t know this Mr Molali and nobody has threatened him. I am old, does that mean I cannot sleep? A video can be taken anywhere, even inside my house when I am with my wife. As far as Ms Vijaylakshmi’s name being linked with me, it is nothing but a ridiculousness. She is my relative, I know her for years. She does work in Ayush, but it does not mean that I have a relationship with her,” he retorted.