Thiruvananthpuram: Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau looks for more evidence

Veracity of audio clips to be checked.

Thiruvananthpuram: The Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau is learnt to be searching for fresh evidence against former finance minister K.M. Mani in the audio conversations produced by bar owner Biju Ramesh as part of the further probe into the bar bribery case.

According to Vigilance sources, Biju Ramesh had maintained that the audio conversations handed over by him contained conversations of many bar owners, including Kerala Bar Hotels Association leaders, in which they admit to having paid bribe to Mr Mani. The Vigilance team is now exploring the option of scientifically proving the veracity of the audio conversations.

However, legal experts suggest that it would be difficult to prosecute the case with such evidence. Those could be only circumstantial evidence and the accused always enjoys the benefit of doubt.

Mr Biju Ramesh had secretly recorded the conversations with bar owners. During the conversation, he deliberately asks some persons (said to be bar owners and association leaders) regarding collection of funds for bribing the minister and they accept it.

Now the Vigilance is trying to establish scientifically that the voices in the audio conversations were that of Mr Biju Ramesh and other bar owners, including association president Rajkumar alias Unni, said a Vigilance source.

It may be recalled that Vigilance special investigation unit SP R. Sukesan had recently stated before the court that certain new facts pertaining to the alleged corruption had come to his notice and hence a further probe needed to be conducted.

He had also stated that the further probe earlier could not be fully completed due to the imposition of time frame and also due to the foreclosure of investigation without obtaining expert scientific analysis of the materials collected.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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