No scope for probe against K Babu

Vigilance sources say Biju had raised these allegations earlier, but there was no evidence

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Even as bar owner Biju Ramesh reiterated his allegation of bribing excise minister K. Babu, Vigilance sources said that there was little scope for a further probe as all allegations had been probed during the quick verification which had found no evidence to substantiate the charges.

“All allegations pertaining to bribing the minister in his office were raised by Biju earlier also and hence there was no scope for further investigation unless there was any specific court orders or government directives. Biju even could not give any specific details pertaining to the date on which the bribe was handed over,” said VACB sources.

Meanwhile, the issue is now under the consideration of the Lok Ayukta as under a private petition. The VACB had handed over the quick verification report to the Lok Ayukta last month.

A team led by VACB Ernakulam central range DySP M. N. Ramesh did the quick verification and his recommendation that there was no scope for a detailed investigation after registering a case was already approved by Vigilance director Vinson M. Paul and other senior officials.

The quick verification was ordered after Biju had said in a statement given before a local court here under CrPC 164 in connection with the case against Mr K.M.

Mani that Mr. Babu also had demanded Rs 10 lakh. He had even made public statements regarding the bribe being handed over to Babu in the latter’s office.

“All the allegations already made by Babu were looked into during the quick verification. But the investigation officer found that there was no evidence to substantiate,” said Vigilance central range SP K.M. Antony who supervised the quick verification.

The Vigilance earlier had turned down a plea of Opposition Leader V .S. Achuthanandan for a probe against Mr Babu on the basis of the audio records submitted by Biju Ramesh.

The Vigilance maintained that there was no specific information and that the evidence was only vague.

Even as Vigilance special investigation unit-I SP R.S. Sukesan was probing the bar bribery allegation against Mr Mani, the quick verification against Mr Babu was not entrusted with him as there were allegations that Mr Babu had some personal relationship with Mr Sukesan.

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( Source : deccan chronicle )
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