High Court slams Vigilance Anti-Corruption Bureau in Kerala

Tuesday, Feb 21, 2017,12:32 IST By anju A A A

Kochi | The Kerala High Court on Tuesday rapped the state Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau and directed it to “explain” its authority to “comment on or direct” the government to review administrative decisions and actions taken by the government.

The court said this while considering a petition filed by Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly, Ramesh Chennithala, questioning the ‘quick verification’ ordered against the previous Congress-led UDF government’s decision to promote IPS officer N Shanker Reddy to DGP rank and appoint him as VACB director.

“The government will have to think very seriously and decide whether the VACB in Kerala should be allowed to reign over the government. If Vigilance is given such powers, Kerala will go to vigilance raj,” Justice P Ubaid said.

Chennithala, who held Home portfolio in the previous UDF government, said in his petition that granting of promotion to the officer was legal and the state government has authority to do so.

He questioned the Thiruvananthapuram vigilance court’s order for a ‘quick verification’ into the matter.

The judge said, “In fact, the trial court also committed such an error.”
“It appears that some of the special judges (vigilance) do not know the scope and extent of their functions under the Prevention of Corruption Act. I have come across so many cases of complaints mechanically and senselessly forwarded, either for preliminary inquiry or for investigation, thus resulting in atrocious consequences,” the judge said.