Janardhan Reddy
Former minister and mining baron Gali Janardhan Reddy comes out after appearing before the Enforcement Directorate in connection with cases of illegal mining in 2011; in Hyderabad on July 22, 2019. (Photo: IANS)IANS

Karnataka's mining baron and former BJP minister Gali Janardhan Reddy has tested positive for the novel coronavirus and admitted in a private hospital for treatment in Bengaluru, an official said on Sunday.

Janardhan Reddy tests COVID-positive

"Reddy is in a private hospital for treatment after he tested positive for coronavirus on Saturday as he was not feeling well. As he is asymptomatic, he is responding to the treatment," a party official told IANS here.

Confirming that Reddy tested positive for the infection, state Health Minister B. Sriramulu said he would pray to god for his best friend's speedy recovery.

Incidentally, Reddy, 53, was to visit Bellary on Sunday to attend the last rites of Sriramulu's mother after the Supreme Court on August 27 allowed him to travel to his hometown from Bengaluru for two days.

As Reddy is on conditional bail since January 2015 in the multi-crore illegal mining scam cases, he is banned from visiting or staying in Bellary pending investigation.

In a Facebook post, Reddy said he would not be able to attend the funerals he is in the hospital here for treatment.

Sriramulu recently recovered from the infection after he tested positive on August 9 and was treated at a state-run hospital in the city centre.

In a related development, former Congress legislator Munirathna has also been admitted in a private hospital in the city after he tested positive on Saturday.

Munirathna, 57, joined the ruling BJP in November 2019 after he defected from the Congress following his disqualification for revolting against the party. He resigned from the RR Nagar Assembly segment in the city's northwest suburb.

Former Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) minister H.D. Revanna and Congress state unit president D.K. Shivakumar are in separate private hospitals after they both tested positive for the virus last week.

Scores of politicians, including Karnataka Chief Minister B.S Yediyurappa, opposition Congress leader Siddaramaiah, state cabinet ministers S.T. Somashekar, Anand Singh and C.T. Ravi, Lok Sabha members, MLAs and MLCs tested positive and recovered from the infection.