Thiruvanathapuram | In a new twist in bar bribery case against Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani, Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau Director Vincent M Paul today said he was proceeding on leave as it will not be proper for him to continue in the post after a special court rejected agency’s closure report and directed further probe.
When contacted, officials in the office of State Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala told PTI that Paul’s leave request has been received by the Additional Secretary (Home). They also said the officer had only one more month in service.
It will not be proper for me to continue in the post as the court had ordered a further investigation. My continuation in the post will only lead to unnecessary doubts, Paul told reporters, while reacting to the verdict.
The Special Vigilance Court had directed further probe in the case, rejecting the Bureau’s final report which gave a clean chit to Mani and sought closure of the case.
The official said that he had done everything in the case as per law and was hundred per cent objective.
The final report filed by Vigilance Department had kicked up a controversy amid allegations that the Director had overruled the Investigating Officer’s ‘factual report’ which stated enough evidence is there to charge sheet Mani.
The Bar bribery case triggered a political storm since it came to light in October last year after Kerala State Bar Hotel Owners Association working president Biju Ramesh alleged that Mani had demanded Rs five crore as bribe and accepted Rs One crore for renewal of bar licence of over 400 Indian made foreign liquor bars in 2014.