Ramesh Jarkiholi, a politician from Karnataka always remained in controversy for various reasons and this time it was Rape. Changed sides to the Bharatiya Janata Party and represented Gokak Assembly Constituency of Belgaum, Karnataka. The constituency has been ruled by the Jarkiholi family for over 15 years.
He was earlier associated with Indian National Congress. In October 2018, Jarkiholi convinced other MLAs from Belagavi to rebel against Congress. Because he was angry at being dropped from Ministry and having troubleshooter DK Shivakumar influencing Belagavi politics because DKS got Jarkiholi’s rival Lakshmi Hebbalkar elected as MLA from Belagavi (rural) and made her President of KPCC Women’s Wing. He organized 14 other Congress MLAs to resign their posts.
He was one of the 15 MLAs from Congress and 2 from JD(S) who resigned in July 2019, bringing down the HDK Congress-JD(S) coalition and allowing BSY to return to Power. After the Supreme Court ruling held up their disqualification but allowed them to run, Jarkiholi joined BJP along with all other rebels inducted by Sri B.S. Yeddyurappa and other important persons.
He was given a BJP ticket for By Poll for his Gokak seat. He then conveniently overpowered his challengers in by-polls in December, beating his nearest rival, his brother Lakhan contesting as a Congress candidate, by almost 30,000 votes. The win was not on his merits but just the Modi wave.
On 2 March 2021, a case was filed against Jarkiholi for sexually harassing a woman on the pretext of getting her a government job. Video clips emerged purporting to show Jarkiholi getting intimate with the victim. Although he denied the charges, Jarkiholi was asked to resign just before the budget session.
The case of the alleged sex-for-jobs CD is continuing to make waves in Karnataka – particularly in political circles. BJP MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi resigned as Water Resources Minister after local channels began playing a tape that allegedly showed him with a woman. The complaint that was subsequently filed – by a third person – was later withdrawn, and the woman filed one herself.
Now she has written to the Karnataka Chief Justice, requesting him to personally supervise the investigation and direct the state to provide her with protection. “I am the rape victim, having filed a complaint against the former minister of the Government of Karnataka… Ramesh Jarkiholi is a highly influential person and has already threatened me in public… of going to any extent against me to clear my charges against him,” she wrote.
“I have already expressed my serious apprehension about the frequent threats… to me and my parents by Ramesh Jarkiholi and his followers… have requested the Special Investigation Team (SIT) seeking protection for myself and my parents,” she added.
In her three-page letter the woman also wrote: “Despite my apprehension, the SIT has not given any protection to my parents and to myself, so far, in collusion with Ramesh Jarkiholi.” “Ramesh Jarkiholi is having criminal antecedents and has already started destroying evidence…” Ramesh Jarkiholi may kill me at any place or at any point…” she alleged.
The opposition Congress has attacked the ruling BJP on this issue – both inside and outside the Assembly, with the former Chief Minister taking them on social media.
Jarkiholi is from a prominent sugarcane growing family and Businessman Laxmanrao Jarkiholi. He is from Valmiki Nayaka community designated as a Scheduled Tribe in India’s reservation system. His four siblings are all also in Politics, three with Congress and two with BJP.
The rape victim is scared of this family due to their background. Woman in Ramesh Jarkiholi sex scandal seeks state protection. She has sent a video message to Karnataka Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai seeking protection after a CD was leaked to several media channels which showed her in a compromising position with Jarkiholi. She has claimed that the CD has damaged her reputation and as a result, both she and her family have attempted suicide.
The woman has also stated that she does not know how the video of her and Ramesh Jarkiholi was captured. Jarkiholi has called the video fake. His brother Balachandra Jarkiholi on Sunday said that the conspirators spent over Rs 15 crores to upload the video in Russia.
Ramesh added to the theory, stating that the entire conspiracy was hatched in two apartments around the Yeshwantpur area of Bengaluru. He said that there are two main conspirators and at least seven more behind them who hatched the plan. He refused to divulge any more details.