Former Karnataka minister Gali Janardhana Reddy was arrested along with an aide after hours of questioning in an alleged bribery case in Bengaluru on Sunday.
“We have taken the decision to arrest him on the basis of credible evidence and witnesses statements,” said Alok Kumar, additional commissioner of police, central crime branch (CCB) of Bengaluru police.
The bribery case against Reddy pertains to one Syed Ahmed Fareed, a ponzi scam accused, alleged to have cheated around 15,000 people to the tune of Rs 600 crore through his firm Ambidant Marketing.
The crime branch had issued a notice asking Mr Reddy to appear before it on Sunday after conducting searches at his Ballari home yesterday.
Earlier today, in a video message, Mr Reddy said he was not on the run, and rubbished reports that he was in Hyderabad.
“Now that the notice has been issued by the police, I have decided to appear before the Central Crime Branch today itself though the notice says I should appear on Sunday,” Mr Reddy said in the video.
“We will wait and watch what happens as it is a holiday today. We will apply for bail once the situation becomes clear,” Kumar said.
A strongman from Ballari, Reddy was denied ticket by BJP in the Karnataka assembly elections in May, but campaigned for his two brothers, Gali Karunakara Reddy and Gali Somashekhara Reddy and his aide Sriramulu, who had won the Ballari seat.
However, after Sriramulu resigned as the Ballari Lok Sabha MP, Congress won the seat in the recent by-election.