Sabarimala Corruption: Kerala High Court Takes Suo Motu Cognizance Of Alleged Fake Bills

kerela high court law insider

Esha Nath

Published On: February 02, 2022 at 19:05 IST

The Kerala High Court on Tuesday initiated a Suo Motu case to examine Allegations of widespread Corruption behind the Food bill submission by Travancore Devasvam board and subsequent disbanding of the Devaswom Vigilance Wing.

Soon, a Division Bench of Justice Anil K Narendran and Justice PG Ajithkumar took up the matter to examine the Alleged Corruption at the Sabarimala Guest House.

According to the report, four officers, Including two sub-inspectors were Removed from the Vigilance Wing and only The Superintendent of Police, who is soon to retire, was retained. The rest of the Officers returned to the Police Department.

The news report further claimed that the Vigilance Wing found inflated food bills provided to the Dignitaries and Higher Officials staying in the guest house.

The Court noted that “Dignitaries who visited Sabarimala must Bear the cost of food by themselves. For Years, the expenses of the Guest House Have not been audited. Even when the Special Commissioner was not at Sabarimala, his food expenses are Recorded”

Upon the Vigilance Wing unearthing the Misappropriation, few of the cases were handed over to the State Vigilance. It has been Alleged that it was done by Administrative Officer, Nilakkal by purchasing materials for the mess directed by Devaswam.

Thereafter, a crime was registered by the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau under Sections 420, 468 and 471 of the Indian Penal Code and Section 13(2) r/w Section 13(1) (a) of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Meanwhile the Court noted that the Vigilance Wing had detected several other Instances of malpractices.

Standing Counsel for Travancore Devaswom Board pointed out that the Vigilance Wing of the Board currently consists of the Chief Vigilance Officer and one Officer in the cadre of Sub-Inspector.

The Government Pleader submitted that the other Officers were returned to the Police Department since their deputation period had expired and there was no request by the Devaswom Board for an extension.

Therefore, the Court directed the Amicus Curiae Advocate N. Raghuraj to get Instructions regarding the matter from the Special Commissioner of Sabarimala. The matter will be taken up on February 3 for further consideration.

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