Misuse of CM’s relief fund: Lokayukta ticks off petitioner

Kerala Lokayukta board at the state legislature in Thiruvanathapuram. Photo: Manorama

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Lokayukta has passed scathing remarks against R S Sasikumar, the petitioner in the case related to the alleged inappropriate distribution of money from the Chief Minister’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF), for seeking regular postponement of hearings.

Instead of asking the Lokayukta to defer the hearings, the petitioner should approach the High Court and obtain a stay on the proceedings, it said on Monday.

The full bench of the Lokayukta meets regularly for the case. “We will be happy if the case is transferred from us,” said the Lokayukta, which posted the next hearing on July 20.

During Monday’s hearing, the Lokayukta ridiculed the petitioner for seeking postponements by commenting that he would always be in the news.

Sasikumar had approached the High Court against the Lokayukta’s order issued one year ago asking the full bench to examine the validity of the case. However, he moved the Lokayukta seeking postponement of the hearings as the High Court is yet to deliver its verdict.

The case is being heard by the full bench of the Lokayukta comprising Justices Cyriac Joseph, Haroon Al Rashid and Babu Mathew P Joseph.

In his complaint, Sasikumar alleged that the following aid distributed from CMDRF amounted to misuse of funds:

Rs 25 lakh was paid for the educational expenses of the children of the late Uzhavoor Vijayan, an NCP leader; Rs 8.5 lakh was given to the son of the late Ramachandran Nair - who was the MLA from Chengannur - apart from appointing him as an assistant engineer; Rs 20 lakh paid - in addition to a government job and other benefits - to the widow of a civil police officer who was killed when the pilot vehicle of the then CPM state secretary the late Kodiyeri Balakrishnan met with an accident.

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