Rapped by HC, K’taka Anti-Corruption Bureau summons B’luru DC for probe

After being rapped by the High Court, Karnataka’s Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Thursday summoned Bengaluru Urban District Commissioner J. Manjunath for interrogation in connection with the bribe case.

The High Court had hauled up the ACB and called it a “centre of corruption” and “collection centre”. In a setback to the ruling BJP, the bench headed by Justice H.P. Sandesh had further stated that ACB is presently headed by a tainted ADGP.

The development is seen as a setback to the ruling BJP government in Karnataka. Former CM H.D. Kumaraswamy slammed ruling BJP on Thursday saying that it is a shameful that the ACB wing is headed by a tainted officer.

Noting that the government is intentionally posting such tainted officers to this post, the court said it knows what all has been done in the case of former Chief Secretary Jadhav case. The investigation officer is useless, the bench had noted.

DC Manjunath was questioned in connection with the raid conducted by ACB on DC’s office on May 21. The sleuths have arrested deputy tehsildar Mahesh and contract worker Chetan while receiving a bribe of Rs 5 lakh in connection with giving a favourable order from the DC court on a land dispute case.

It was alleged that the ACB is trying to protect DC Manjunath. It was charged that Manjunath is not named in the FIR even as accused Mahesh had given a statement that he had received bribe as per the directions of the DC.

After coming across this fact, the High Court had taken ACB to task over this and later DC Manjunath was added as the accused number three in the case.

While looking into the bail petition of accused Mahesh, the High Court bench stated that ACB offices in the state have become centres of corruption. Senior officers are let off and only juniors are made accused in corruption cases. The cases have to be lodged against senior officers who indulge in corruption, the bench had remarked.

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