KOCHI: CPI MLA V S Sunil Kumar on Monday approached the Kerala High Court seeking a directive to the Director of the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau to conclude the preliminary inquiry into the allegations of bribery levelled by bar owners against Finance Minister K M Mani over reopening of closed bars within seven days.
The petitioner pointed out that Biju Ramesh, working president of the Kerala State Bar and Restaurant Owners Association, revealed that he had paid bribe to the Minister for facilitating the renewal of licence to bar hotels.
Mani had allegedly demanded `5 crore as bribe for ensuring a favourable decision, but was paid an amount of Rs 1 crore.
The petitioner submitted that the government is delaying the completion of the preliminary inquiry in a criminal complaint of corruption.
The Constitutional Bench of the Supreme Court had held that preliminary inquiry shall not extend beyond seven days. The Vigilance Director had directed the Vigilance Superintendent to take 45 days for completion of the preliminary report.
The delay will result in tampering with the case by the persons against whom the allegations are made.
The petitioner also sought a directive to the Vigilance Department to refrain from conducting a detailed factual inquiry without registering a crime and filing the first information report.