Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], October 19 (ANI): Kerala-based businessman Biju Ramesh has alleged that Kerala Congress (M) leader who recently Jose K Mani had offered him Rs 10 crore to withdraw his allegations against former Finance Minister K M Mani in connection with the bar bribery case.
Ramesh alleged that he paid Rs 1 crore for reopening the bars in the state.
"Bar bribery case was not a fabricated one. It was a real story which we have experienced. There was no conspiracy behind this," said Ramesh.
"Bar bribery case was not part of any pressure or conspiracy. It has revealed as part of channel discussions. Two days after revealing it, I was threatened by E T Jose, former KSFE chairman that if I won't withdraw the statement I will be harmed. After two to three weeks when we were in Kerala State Bar hotels Association Office, Jose K Mani telephoned John Kallat, a bar owner and spoke to me. Jose K Mani offered me Rs 10 crores to withdraw the statement," Ramesh told reporters.
Ramesh further claimed that Radhakrishnan, a messenger sent by Jose K Mani came to his office and offered him Rs 10 crores personally.
"Jose K Mani spoke to me on Radhakrishnan's phone. Many people including Jose K Mani tried to influence and purchase me," he added.
Ramesh's claim came after Kerala Congress (M) had revealed an investigation report conducted by their party on bar bribery case. According to the report bar bribery case was the result of Ramesh's conspiracy with Congress leaders including Ramesh Chennithala and Adoor Prakash.
"Congress Government attacked me in order to change my statement in many ways. Excise Minister K Babu sent special teams from four places to my offices to conduct raids. If I have done it by conspiring with them why should they attack me?" said Ramesh.
"If I had done this for Congress party, how did they register many fabricated cases against me? I have spent about Rs 2 crores for this case. 22 persons including chief secretary approached Supreme court against me. If I would have done this tie up with Congress this would not have happened." he added.
Ramesh further added that he met CPM leaders Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, V Sivankutty and Pinarayi Vijayan and briefed them about this.
"They asked me if I will change my stand but I denied. Till today I did not change my stand and I am stuck on my statement. If the Government is ready to investigate bar bribery case again, all others except K M Mani are here. Vigilance had probed case against K Babu only," said Ramesh.
"Now I am revealing this after Kerala Congress (M)'s investigation report was out yesterday which says I was made conspiracy with Congress leaders Ramesh Chennithala and others. This was like questioning my character. Am I a tool for them to make conspiracy? I have said the truth. I am revealing this because Jose K Mani tried to fabricate allegations against me yesterday," he added.
Ramesh continued saying that if Jose K Mani has investigation report which gives clean chit to K M Mani then let it come out.
"Let us reinvestigate again. I don't wants to insult a person who is no more. LDF was highlighted all this . Bar bribery case was the one which was demonstrated into the minds of people as big corruption by ruling party. On the basis of that LDF has staged protest in secretariat and in assembly," said Ramesh.
Bar bribery case was one among the big allegations faced by former UDF and finance minister K M Mani raised by Biju Ramesh, working president of Kerala Bar Hotels Association.
He had revealed that K M Mani received 1crore rupees as bribe for reopening closed bars. Later K M Mani had quit from the cabinet after Kerala highcourt had made some remarks against him. Kerala high court had ended proceedings against him after his death in 2019.
Last week his son and chief of Kerala Congress M had declared that they have decided to join LDF. (ANI)