Thiruvananthapuram: The state-wide raids carried out by the Vigilance and Anti- Corruption Bureau on the branches of Kerala State Financial Enterprises were with the full knowledge of a higher authority in the government.
Even as the LDF government has denounced the action as untimely and unnecessary, inspections were carried out by the agency only after it became fully convinced that irregularities were indeed carried out in the conduct of chitties at some KSFE branches.
The Vigilance raid was conducted in 40 KSFE offices on Saturday. This followed several days of secret inspection by the corruption watchdog of the state government.
Vigilance secretary Sanjay Kaul was reportedly aware of the raids. He had given the nod for the raids.
The order issued to conduct the raid is in the possession of Manorama News.
A direction had gone out to all Vigilance units from its headquarters directing them to conduct raids in at least one KSFE branch.
The direction for lightning raids came from the headquarters with a foreword referring to the irregularities as something that would even affect the very existence of KSFE.
The Vigilance went for the raids after verifying the confidential information regarding the irregularities in the KSFE. It selected KSFE branches which had maximum irregularities.
Five major irregularities specially mentioned in the raid report handed out to the Vigilance units are non-deposit of chitty money in the treasury, fake chitties, money laundering through chitties, officials bagging chitties in benami names and other violations.
The matter was brought to the notice of the Secretary in charge of the Vigilance.
The Vigilance will soon submit its explanation regarding the raids in the wake of criticism from the LDF government. CPM leaders have alleged conspiracy behind the raids as the opposition has been given another stick to beat the LDF government in the run-up to the local body polls.