Hubballi: Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday in the wake of a report about his role the cricket betting scandal in a Kannada daily, Hubballi-Dharwad (East) MLA Abbayya termed the allegation “baseless”.
The denial follows the apperance of his name in an application filed by Deputy Superintendent of Police (CID) B.G. Ratnakar before the court seeking custody of the two bookies, Viru Kathare and Arjun Shiralkar, arrested on August 2 following a complaint filed by D.C. Tejas, a reporter in Suvarna News Channe. The application mentions that the bookies had revealed that one Gaju Habib used to collect Rs. 2.25 lakh for Abbayya. It also mentions that Habib used to keep Rs. 25,000 as his share and give the rest to the MLA.
The application also mentions that the bookies used to give ‘mamul’ every month to the police, a few politicians and some journalists. Sources said that the CID had already issued notices to some journalists to appear before them in Bengaluru for an inquiry.
The MLA however, admitted that he knew Habib. “Habib is a Congress worker and regularly comes to my office. I spoke to him and he said he has never collected money from the bookie. CID is free to inquire him to unearth the truth. I am ready for an inquiry too,” he said.
Abbayya also said that he would never stoop to such levels and added that this was a political conspiracy.
“I don’t know why the bookie named me. I urge the CID to hold an inquiry, and if people are not happy with the outcome, then let it be referred to the CBI,” he said.