Former TOI journalist named in FIR on ‘Operation Lotus’ gone kaput in which BJP leaders talk of buying up MLAs, Speaker, SC judges with Modi-Shah help

Screenshot 2019-02-14 11.41.21Screenshot 2019-02-14 11.39.36Screenshot 2019-02-14 11.32.20

A former journalist of The Times of India has been named in the First Information Report (FIR) in a sensational audio clip in which the BJP leader in Karnataka, B.S Yeddyurappa, offers astounding amounts of money to a JDS MLA’s son.

On the 80-minute tape secretly recorded on February 8:

# As much as Rs 50-60 crore is dangled before the MLA’s son to urge his father to switch sides and fight fresh elections;

# The Speaker of the legislative assembly K.R. Ramesh Kumar is alleged to have been bought over for Rs 50 crore;

# And there is talk of prime minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah having all this stitched up with High Court and Supreme Court judges.

The journalist named in the FIR as the 4th accused is M.B. Maramkal, a long time correspondent of The Times of India in Hubli and Mysore, who had been serving as a media adviser to Yeddyurappa from around the assembly elections last year.

ToI and The New Indian Express do not name Maramkal in their reports on the FIR but The Hindu does (above). Praja Vani, the Kannada daily from the Deccan Herald group, reports that Maramkal was present in the room along with Yeddyurappa and two others during the discussions.

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Read the full 80-minute transcript: Tell where to send cash

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