Kottayam | Putting up a brave face, Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani, whose statement was taken by a Vigilance team in connection with the bar bribery scam, today said there was nothing unusual in the procedure.
There is nothing unusual. When there is a case, it is necessary to present one’s statement. This was an opportunity for that, he told reporters here.
Meanwhile, dismissing the vigilance probe against Mani, Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan said it was a mere farce. Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had assured the state assembly that no vigilance official, part of the team probing the case, would be transferred. However, that was not so as Vigilance ADGP Jaocb Thomas had reportedly been removed, the veteran marxist leader said.
A Vigilance team probing the bar bribe scam had last night taken a statement from Mani, against whom an FIR had been filed at the Vigilance court in Thrissur.
The FIR was registered by the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau on the basis of a complaint by Achuthanandan after an initial probe found prima facie evidence against the Minister.
Achuthanandan had filed the complaint following charges made by Biju Ramesh, Working President of the Kerala Bar Hotel Owners Association, in November last that Rs one crore had been paid as bribe to Mani for a favourable decision on re-opening of closed bars.
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