Udupi (Karnataka): Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Shobha Karandlaje, said on Friday that the BJP is not protecting Chaitra Kundapura, the prime accused in the BJP ‘ticket scam’.
Hindutva activists Kundapura was arrested on Tuesday for allegedly conning Rs 5 crore out of a businessman by promising him a BJP ticket to contest the Assembly elections held in May.
Speaking to reporters here, Karandlaje said that she does not have any personal contact with Kundapura.
“We are not protecting her. I learnt about her arrest through the media. In both political or public life, whoever makes mistakes should be punished. The case is being investigated, let the probe conclude in an unbiased manner,” she said.
There is no system of getting tickets by paying money in the BJP, she said.
Her comments came after Kundapura reportedly claimed that she will be given a ticket to contest next year’s Lok Sabha elections from the Udupi-Chikmagalur seat, which is presently represented by Karandlaje.
In a purported audio clip, Kundapura could be heard saying that ticket for the Udupi-Chikmagalur Lok Sabha seat ticket will not be given to Karandlaje. She is also heard saying in the clip that to ensure her victory, she should get MLAs elected and she is trying for that.
It has also come to light that Kundapura carried out a propaganda that Karandlaje is not an effective speaker and that she can’t speak Hindi.
Reacting to this, Karandlaje said that the top leaders of the party decide who should be given tickets to contest elections.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah will take a call on ticket distribution. If someone is claiming that she/he will contest from a particular seat, it does not hold any value,” Karandlaje said.
Meanwhile, the doctors at the Victoria Hospital treating Kundapura, who collapsed during interrogation, said on Friday that her health is stable.
“The patient had seizures earlier but she is not on medication. Vitals stable. ABG, RBS and ECG are normal. CT Scan was done which is normal. She is being treated in the ICU. At present her clinical condition is stable. All the required specialists have been involved in her treatment,” a hospital release said.
Balaji Pai, special officer at the Trauma Care Centre of the hospital, said that Kundapura is recovering.
“It is not confirmed if she had a fit attack. Her friends informed that she had similar problems earlier as well. After she regains full consciousness, she will be shifted to the ward,” Pai said.