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Lokayukta cops asked to re-probe charges

Bangalore, Dec 24, 2013, DHNS: 1:40 IST
The State government has written to the Lokayukta police to re-investigate the disproportionate assets case against a top government official.

The government’s move is said to be in violation of the Supreme Court guidelines on granting sanction to government servants facing probe under Prevention of Corruption Act. It clearly states that there is no room for re-investigating the allegations on the basis of the appeal by the accused. The Central Vigilance Commission too has issued guidelines on similar lines.

Despite the SC guidelines, the State Government has written to the Lokayukta police to “re-investigate” the allegations against S C Jayachandra, the Chief Planning Officer and Chief Engineer of Karnataka State Highway Development Project.

The Lokayukta police conducted a raid on Jayachandra in 2008 while he was serving as chief engineer for Hemavathi project. He was found to possess assets which were disproportionate to his income, by 102.69 pc. He was found to be owning two houses in Bangalore, two sites, 32 acres of land and as many as 25 bank accounts.

On May 25, 2012, the Additional Director General of Police (Lokayukta) submitted a proposal to the State government seeking its sanction to prosecute Jayachandra.

The Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms (DPAR) sat on the proposal for the last one and half years. However, on October 29, 2013, the DPAR officials, wrote to ADGP, Lokayukta, urging him to re-investigate the charges against the officer. They have cited an appeal filed by Jayachandra before the competent authority.

According to sources, Jayachandra has managed to bring pressure to seek re-investigation, after he failed in his attempt to prevail upon DPAR for refusing sanction.
When contacted, Chief Secretary to Government, Kaushik Mukherjee said he did not have complete information on the case, but will not allow violation of the SC guidelines. He said a committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary deals with issues relating to granting sanctions, and the request might have been forwarded following a request by the committee. “ I will obtain the information immediately and rectify the mistake, if any,” Mukherjee said.

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