Karnataka contractor's suicide: Kin threaten to defer funeral till minister's arrest

Recently, Santosh Patil had said, in Hindalga Panchayat limits, Belagavi, he initiated 108 road works worth Rs 4 crore only after taking permission from Eshwarappa directly. 

Published: 12th April 2022 05:13 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th April 2022 08:06 AM   |  A+A-

Santosh Patil meeting Minister K S Eshwarappa recently. (Photo | Special Arrangement)

Santosh Patil meeting Minister K S Eshwarappa recently. (Photo | Special Arrangement)

Express News Service

BELAGAVI: The state government is under intense pressure to arrest rural development and panchayat raj minister KS Eshwarappa and expel him from the state cabinet following the suicide of a civil contractor from Belagavi

The contractor, Santosh Patil (also a BJP worker) had levelled serious allegations against Eshwarappa of demanding a huge commission to clear his bills related to the road development works which he had accomplished under the supervision of the RDPR (Rural Development and Panchayat Raj) Department in Belagavi.

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On Monday night, Santosh Patil had sent a message on Whatsapp to several journalists in Belagavi in which he said, "RDPR Minister KS Eshwarappa is directly responsible for my death and he should be punished for it. I am taking the extreme step by ignoring all my personal interests. I request with folded hands to the PM, CM and leaders of my Lingayat community including BS Yediyurappa to extend a helping hand to my wife and child. Many many thanks to the media friends.''

Recently, Santosh Patil had said, in Hindalga Panchayat limits, Belagavi, he initiated 108 road works worth Rs 4 crore only after taking permission from Eshwarappa directly. Eventually, the RDPR Department and associates of Eshwarappa refused to help him get the work orders (orders of the road works he completed) or the bills paid, he added.

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After the financers who had loaned Santosh Patil a huge amount started building pressure on him to return the loans, he had written letters to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on March 11 (a copy of which is available with TNIE), Patil said, "he would have no other option but to commit suicide if his bills and work orders were not released.''

 A pooja performed in Hindalga, Belagavi, before a road work which was
taken up by Santosh Patil. 

His letter to the PM further states "The associates of the Minister (KS Eshwarappa) are insisting me to pay them ``commission''  for the completed works. Honorable sir, I am in great tension and huge pressure from creditors who lent me money on interest. If the payment and the work order are not given to me (by RDPR Department) on an immediate basis, then unwillingly I do not have an option for myself except suicide.''

On the instructions of Eshwarappa on February 12, 2021, Patil had said in the letter to Modi, he took up 108 road works and completed them spending Rs 4 crore. But even after a year of starting the works, the RDPR Department neither paid the bills nor the work orders. In the letter, Patil repeated about the loans he availed to take up the works and the pressure he was facing to clear the money, while requesting the PM to help him get out of the financial crisis.

ALSO READ | Contractor who charged Karnataka minister KS Eshwarappa of corruption dies by suicide

In Belgavi, Patil's wife blamed Eshwarappa for her husband's death while stating that the minister was not fit to stay in his position. She hit out at Eshwarappa for stating that he did not know who Santosh Patil actually was. ``My husband met Eshwarappa asking him to help pay the bills and the photos of both of them are there with me. My husband invested a huge amount and worked very hard to complete all the road works on the instructions of Eshwarappa. Now, Eshwarappa claims he does not know who Patil is, she added.

Shocked at the death of Patil, his brother Prashant Patil said, "We will not perform the funeral of Santosh Patil until Eshwarappa is arrested. Eshwarappa is directly responsible for his death. He committed suicide only due to Eshwarappa's torture. Besides threatening Santosh Patil, Eshwarappa also had registered a case against him. Eshwarappa met Santosh on several occasions and got the works done from the latter,'' he alleged.

Recently, Santosh Patil had shared photos of many road works taken up by him and his meetings with Eshwarappa and other leaders.


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