Riyaz called B'luru DC to Lokayukta's house, High Court told

Riyaz called B'luru DC to Lokayukta's house, High Court told

Riyaz called B'luru DC to Lokayukta's house, High Court told

Bengaluru Urban Deputy Commissioner V Shankar and Bengaluru South Tahsildar Dayanand B R were also “summoned” to the official residence of Lokayukta Justice Y Bhaskar Rao by his son Yerabati Ashwin, the Joint Commissioner (PRO) Syed Riyaz and V Bhaskar, another prime suspect in the extortion racket.

In its objections to the bail applications of Riyaz and B M Srinivasa Gowda before the High Court, a television journalist who is also named in the racket, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) stressed it needed to probe into many more cases of extortion and corruption in the Lokayukta.

The Special Public Prosecutor submitted Shankar’s statement under section 164 of the CrPC (statement before the magistrate). Shankar narrated how he had to visit the Lokayukta’s house at Riyaz’s behest. He also recalled how Ashwin and Bhaskar interfered in the affairs of other departments, which also showed “colourable” exercise of power by Riyaz.

In his statement, Dayanand said Riyaz had asked him to come to Lokayukta’s house. He echoed Shankar’s statement that Ashwin and Bhaskar were interfering in the affairs of other departments. The tahsildar said Bhaskar suggested he pay up as Ashwin was “unhappy” with his conduct.

In the objections, the SIT also referred to a file noting of BDA documents it had seized during investigation into another case. It was evident that Riyaz was summoning the officials of other departments to his office and giving them instructions, something beyond his official power, the SIT stated.

The probe team said it had the evidence to show Riyaz and other suspects had “converted the office of Lokayukta, which is established for fighting corruption, into an office of corruption, resulting in disrepute and damage to the very institution at the national level.”

“Riyaz, being the officer of the rank of Joint Commissioner/PRO, deliberately facilitated and participated in the commission of the offences. He is one of the main players in the commission of offences. The investigation has revealed there are several such instances, which are yet to be unearthed and the case is still under investigation,” the SIT said.

As for Gowda, the SIT stated the call details of his mobile phone clearly showed he was “in constant touch” with Riyaz and Ashok Kumar, a realtor who has been arrested in the case. The prosecutor said Gowda “misused” the RTI Act and “conspired” with several people, including Riyaz, and “assisted” them in the criminal conspiracy to extort money from public servants of various departments.

The SIT urged Justice L Narayanaswamy to reject both the bail applications. The hearing was adjourned until Tuesday.

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