Former Kerala Finance Minister, KM Mani and IPS (former Vigilance Director) Shankar Reddy have just suffered a major setback as the Thiruvananthapuram Vigilance court has ordered a further probe into the bar bribe case for which Mani was forced to resign. SP R Sukesan alleged that N Shankar Reddy had forced him to alter the case details of the largely infamous bar bribery case. This happened after bar baron Biju Ramesh raised bribery accusations against two Congress ministers from Kerala on 2nd February, earlier this year.
Following this statement, the Vigilance court has ordered a re-investigation.
Ramesh, working president of Kerala Bar Hotel Owners Association alleged that he had to pay Rs 2 crore to Home Minister Chennithala and Rs 25 lakh to Health Minister Sivakumar.
He also said that Chennithala was bribed as per an order from Excise Minister K Babu. He said that he had paid it because it was made clear to him that the government would create trouble for the liquor business if he did not.
Both the ministers had earlier denied all such allegations.
SP Sukesan has raised a new set of allegations following the second round of fact digging. He said that Shankar Reddy had discarded pivotal evidence and went to the extent of manipulating them to make the case in favor of the accused (evidence tampering).
“I had to make alterations in the case dairy and submit a report exonerating former finance minister…” said Sukesan.
This case was one of the biggest reasons for UDF losing in the previous assembly polls. The former Vigilance Director has welcomed the probe saying that he has nothing to hide. This is also a major setback for Congress who had to quit the UDF following this case. The national political repercussions are unsure, as the case is still on.