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On Buzz Of FBI Team In India To Probe Karnataka Bitcoin Case, CBI’s Reply

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CBI coordinates closely with international law enforcement agencies, the agency said

New Delhi:

No team of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has come to India to investigate the alleged Bitcoin scam in Karnataka, the CBI clarified today in the wake of media reports and Congress leaders claiming that officials of the US law enforcement agency are in the country to probe the issue.

“This is to inform that FBI has not sent any team to India for conducting a probe in the matter nor has any request been made by FBI to CBI for conducting investigation in this case in India,” the central probe agency said in a statement.

“Accordingly, the question of according any permission for the probe by Competent Authority in India does not arise. CBI as the National Central Bureau for INTERPOL in India coordinates closely with international law enforcement agencies including FBI,” the statement added.

The CBI’s clarification comes after Congress leaders claimed that the FBI is looking into the matter and dared BJP leaders in Karnataka, including Chief Minister Basavaraj S Bommai, to come clear.

At the centre of the massive row in Srikrishna Ramesh, who was arrested in a drugs case in 2020. In the course of their investigation, police found that Ramesh was a hacker allegedly involved in several online crimes.

He has reportedly confessed to hacking into and stealing from Bitcoin exchanges and a government portal, among others.

The Opposition has pointed out gaps in Bengaluru police’s probe and alleged that many BJP leaders and senior officials received kickbacks in the form of Bitcoins.

Chief Minister Bommai, Karnataka’s Home Minister at the time, has been a key target of the Opposition offensive.

Mr Bommai had even met Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the issue. He had later said the PM had asked him not to worry about the allegations.

On Friday, Congress MLA Priyank Kharge claimed the FBI is in the Delhi to investigate the “billion dollar #BitCoinScam” and said “a lot of BJP’s skeletons will tumble out” if the matter is probed properly.

Soon after, senior Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala posed several questions to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Mr Bommai on the issue.



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