‘Preferential treatment’ issue: K’taka ACB files chargesheet against Sasikala

The Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) counsel has informed the Karnataka High Court on Wednesday that ACB has submitted a chargesheet in connection with the case of providing preferential treatment to V.K. Sasikala, a close aide of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister (late) J. Jayalalithaa.

Advocate P.N. Manmohan informed the Division Bench headed by Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi about the grant of sanction by the state government against accused police officers and submission of chargesheet on January 7.

The court later disposed of the petition filed in this regard questioning delay of the investigation.

The ACB has submitted a chargesheet in connection with the case against police officers Krishnakumar, Dr R. Anita, B.S. Suresh, Gajaraja Makanuru. The chargesheet has also been submitted against Sasikala and Ilavarasi regarding the case.

The state government has consented for the filing of charge sheet against accused police officers to the prosecution on December 31, 2021. The permission has been given under the provision of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

A case has been filed by one K.S. Geetha in the High Court of Karnataka, questioning the delay into the investigation of case of preferential treatment to Sasikala and others at central prison of Parappana Agrahara in Bengaluru at the time of their imprisonment.

The High Court earlier expressed its displeasure over submission of investigation report over the case of providing preferential treatment in prison for Sasikala and others by police officers after being bribed. The High Court further stated that it would summon Home Secretary if the report is not submitted in a month. The ACB has submitted an affidavit to the court citing technical reasons for the delay.

After the allegations were surfaced and sensational charges by then Karnataka DG (Prisons) D. Roopa, 295-page report was submitted by IAS officer Vinay Kumar.

The report said to be confirmed Sasikala was given preferential treatment and a separate kitchen functioned for her in central prison of Bengaluru.

Sources say that Sasikala was allowed to wear personal clothes and she was given a cook. A pressure cooker and spices were found in her cell. She was also provided separate visitor’s room and the corridor in the jail was barricaded for her. Sasikala was allowed free movements.

The CCTV footages shown that Sasikala talking to a visitor for four hours and footage showed Sasikala and Ilavarasi moving out of their block holding a bag, sources said.

The investigation was ordered by then Chief Minister Siddaramaiah. In her report, IPS officer Roopa mentioned that there was a talk that Rs 2 crore had exchanged hands to ensure preferential treatment to Sasikala and she also claimed that there were allegations on her senior officer DGP Prisons Satyanarayana Rao also.

The development has caused severe embarrassment to then Siddaramaiah government. Then an inquiry was ordered and the government had transferred both the officers.

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