Bar bribery case: HC grants 45 days to VACB to submit report

Kochi: The High Court Wednesday gave 45 days to the state Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau to submit a report on further probe in the bar bribery case against former Finance Minister K M Mani.

Justice B Sudheendra Kumar gave the direction while considering a petition filed by Mani challenging the order issued by the vigilance court in Thiruvananthapuram allowing a plea for further investigation in the case.

The Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) informed the court that it would complete the probe in 30 days and the report could be submitted before the court in 45 days.

Manis counsel contended that enough time has been granted for investigating the case.

The court, however, admitted the governments submission seeking more time to file the report.

In his petition, Mani submitted that the VACB could not conduct further probe in the case in which it had filed the final report saying no offence had been made out.

The vigilance court had ordered for further probe into the bar bribery scandal against Mani in 2016 after superintendent of police, vigilance, R Sukesan filed a petition in the court alleging that former Vigilance Director Sankar Reddy had intervened in the investigation in an attempt to give Mani a clean chit.

The case related to the allegation by Kerala State Bar Hotel Owners Association that it had paid Rs 1 crore bribe to Mani for getting favourable decision to reopen closed bars in 2013-14.

He resigned in November 2015 following the high courts observations against him in the bar bribery case.


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