Bed scam: Tejasvi Surya’s aide arrested

Babu is the sixth accused arrested in the case and is an aide of Tejasvi Surya

The Central Crime Branch of Bengaluru city police have arrested an aide of BJP MLA Satish Reddy in connection with the COVID-19 bed booking scam, embarrassing the ruling party in the state. On May 4, party MP from Bangalore South Tejasvi Surya, accompanied by his uncle and Basavanagudi MLA Ravi Subramanya, Bommanahalli MLA Satish Reddy and Chickpet MLA Uday Garudhachar had stormed into Bengaluru South COVID-19 War Room to flag the scam.

But now the Congress has questioned if Tejasvi Surya will hold a press conference and explain the development. Srivatsa, National Campaign In-charge, Youth Congress, took to Twitter, alleging, “BJP MLA Satish Reddy’s close associate Babu ARRESTED in Bed Blocking Scam Satish was with Tejasvi Surya during his ‘expose’ but is himself the Scam’s Kingpin! Tejasvi, will you hold a PC & explain the arrest? Were you protecting your people by blaming Muslims?”

The CCB police statement said that the accused Babu, 34, a resident of Roopena Agrahara in Bommanahalli, was arrested on Monday evening after his role of blocking beds and selling them at higher price for patients came to light. A senior police officer, who did not want to be identified, said that Babu is a personal assistant of Bommanahalli MLA Reddy.

Babu’s role of blocking beds in BBMP hospital came to light when they examined the CCTV footage of the war room and the statements given by the staff members, the police said. The CCB police have already arrested five people — Nethravathi, Rohith, Venkat Subba Rao, Manjunath and Punith — in connection with the case. The sleuths had conducted searches in the war room and obtained technical data. Doctors, who are in charge of each zone war room, had also been questioned.

On May 4, Surya had read out a list of 17 Muslims working there and questioned their appointment and created a furore. He had alleged that hospitals in Bengaluru “blocked” beds in fake names to make money, at a time when there was a dire shortage of beds. He claimed that officials of the BBMP “colluded” with private nursing homes and hospitals to block beds and allocate them for exorbitant fees.

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