The SIT team arrived in the morning, armed with a search warrant. Prior to the searches, the SIT had filed a first information report at a local court on Monday, and also sought permission to conduct searches at the former minister’s residence.
A separate team also raided Janardhana Reddy’s Parijata apartment in Bengaluru, where he stays with his family at present.
In Ballari, SIT members waited till Janardhana Reddy’s father-in-law Parameswara Reddy arrived, and then began the operation. Former MLA G Somashekar Reddy arrived too, and stayed till the SIT team left the premises. By the time the SIT was concluding the search, Reddy’s confidante and Lok Sabha MP B Sriramulu also came.
The SIT team left the house around 2.30pm, after verifying his laptop and desktop, among other things in the house, and seizing some documents related to Reddy’s mining business.
The team also searched the houses of B Nagendra, independent MLA from Kudligi, his close associate K Nagaraj, Madhukumar, partner in Madhu Enterprises, Swastik Nagaraj and Karadapudi Mahesh in Hosapete, besides the house of Panther Jain, partner in Rajapura Mines.
Kowshelendra Kumar, SIT SP, said the team needed more time to compile important documents and evidence collected during the raid. “It will take some more time to cull out the required proof on the illegal iron ore mining and export of ore, after detailed verification,” he said.
Meanwhile, sources said Janardhana Reddy had approached the Supreme Court, seeking permission to go to his native city Ballari, in the last week of September. He sought permission to participate in his son Kirete’s birthday. He was barred by the apex court from going to Ballari, when the court had granted him bail in the illegal iron ore mining case.