Thiruvananthapuram: The Lokayuktha is yet to pronounce the verdict on the plea against the misuse of the Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF), even after one year since the hearing is complete.
The trial was complete and the case was adjourned for the verdict on March 18, 2022. The Lokayuktha says the verdict is delayed as the bill that curtails the powers of the Lokayuktha is still pending with the Governor.
The petition alleged that granting Rs 25 lakh to the family of deceased Uzhavoor Vijayan, using the funds to settle the personal debts of former MLA KK Ramachandran Nair’s family, and giving Rs 20 lakh to Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s gunman Praveen’s family, is all corruption and nepotism. The petition points out that the Chief Minister and other Ministers have violated the rules and misused the CMDRF.
The bench including Lokayuktha Justice Cyriac Joseph, and Upa Lokayuktha Justice Haroon Al Rasheed heard the case. The hearing on the plea which started on February 5, 2022, was completed on March 18, 2022. The case was then adjourned for the verdict.
As per Order 20, Rule 1 of the Civil Procedure Code (CPC), the verdict must be pronounced within 30 days from the day on which the hearing on the case concluded. If the circumstances are exceptional and extraordinary, an additional 15 days may be taken.
However, even after one year from the day the hearing concluded, the Lokayuktha has not pronounced the verdict in the case.
Earlier, it was the Lokayuktha verdict that led to former Minister K T Jaleel’s resignation.
Meanwhile, the Lokayuktha explains that the verdict is not being pronounced yet as the bill which curtails the powers of the Lokayuktha is still pending with the Governor.