HC quashes FIR against Speaker

HC quashes FIR against Speaker
The High Court of Karnataka on Friday quashed the FIR and proceedings against Speaker K G Bopaiah in a case of misappropriation of funds meant for development projects. 

A private complaint had been filed against Bopaiah and others in Kodagu’s designated Lokayukta Court by Saritha Poonacha. Poonacha had stated that the Zilla Panchayat of Kodagu had received funds to the tune of Rs 1.2 crore from the Central Tribal Welfare Association. 

The fund was meant for various projects including development of a lake in the Tithimathi forest area. However, an engineering committee which was formed to submit a feasibility report stated that the place chosen was not suitable for the construction of a lake and also issued a certificate to the effect.

Bopaiah is said to have written the ZP, recommending the work on the lake be entrusted to Kodagu Nirmithi Kendra, a blacklisted organisation. The Kendra started work in the area and Bopaiah is said to have written another letter to the ZP for the release of funds. About Rs 59 lakh was released for the project. 

An inquiry by the assistant commissioner showed that work worth only Rs 20,000 to Rs 40,000 was completed, while the Kendra submitted bills to the tune of Rs 40 lakh and withdrew the money.

The complaint was referred to the Lokayukta police for investigation and an FIR was also filed Bopaiah and the others accused in the complaint approached the High Court, seeking quashing of the FIR and proceedings. 

Justice N Ananda quashed the FIR and proceedings against Bopaiah saying that no prima facie evidence was found and his only involvement was in writing two letters to the Zilla Panchayat. 

The Court dismissed the petitions filed by Kodagu Zilla Panchayat member Raja Rao S N, Chief Executive Officer of the ZP N Krishnappa and Project Manager of Kodagu Nirmithi Kendra Yoga Narasimha Swamy H N.  Investigations will continue into the allegations against these three members.

Notice to Mysore DC
The High Court on Friday ordered issue of notices to deputy commissioner and assistant commissioner of Mysore and the chief executive officer of the Mysore Zilla Panchayat, in a case pertaining to choosing allottees for housing under the Ashraya Scheme.

Anil Kumar, the petitioner and a member of the Mirle Gram Panchayat in Krishnarajanagara taluk, in his PIL had contended that a land measuring one acre and 30 guntas on Survey number 208 in Mirle village had been chosen to construct houses under the Ashraya Scheme. 

The petitioner said the respondents after forming a committee had approved the names of beneficiaries of the scheme. The petitioner contended that 29 beneficiaries were not eligible to get housing under the scheme.

When the petitioner approached the deputy commissioner for information about these beneficiaries, he was told that there were no records available with the deputy commissioner on any of the allottees. 

Subsequently, he approached the High Court. Chief Justice Vikramajit Sen and Justice B V Nagarathna ordered issue of notices to the three.

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