The Andhra Pradesh government Tuesday decided to provide legal assistance to seven Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers under the scanner in YSR Congress Party leader Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy's illegal assets.
The government issued an order to pay the legal fee of the bureaucrats who along with five ministers are facing the probe for their alleged role in issuing 26 controversial government orders (GOs), benefiting Jagan, as the jailed MP is popularly known.
In a similar order issued on July 7, the government had decided to bear the legal expenses of five ministers.
A total of six ministers and eight IAS officers were issued notices by the Supreme Court in March this asking them why their role should not be probed in issuing the 26 controversial GOs issued during Jagan's father, late chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy's tenure.
The GOs allegedly benefited companies and individuals who made investments into the companies of Jagan.
The government's move to pay the legal fee of the ministers had come under criticism from the opposition. There was also demand from IAS officers that the government also come to their rescue.
One of the ministers Mopidevi Venkatramna was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in May. He resigned from the cabinet the same day.
IAS officer Y. Srilakshmi was also arrested by the investigating agency. Both of them are currently in jail and the government has not decided whether to extend the legal aid to them.