Days after Karnataka police officer D Roopa in a report alleged that AIADMK (Amma) general secretary V K Sasikala was enjoying VIP treatment at Parappana Agrahara central prison, Roopa has been transferred to the traffic department, news agency ANI reported on Monday. Sasikala, a close aide of late Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa, is serving time after conviction in a disproportionate assets case.
In the report, submitted to the Home Department and Director General of Police (DGP) for Prison Department H N Sathyanarayana Rao, Deputy Inspector General (Prisons) Roopa claimed that Sasikala was being provided with an exclusive kitchen to cook her meals and relaxed visiting hours in exchange for a Rs 2-crore bribe to jail officials.
“There was a rumour that you are aware of it and were paid Rs 2 crore for this facility. All these allegations are unfortunate and hence you have to address the issue immediately and take action…” DIG Roopa requested Rao in her report.
DGP Rao, however, refuted the allegations saying he had never accepted anything from any prisoner. “We have not provided any special treatment to Sasikala. She is like any other woman prisoner and lodged in the first floor of the womens’ barrack. The allegations are baseless and there is no evidence for them,” Rao said. Sasikala paid Rs 2 crore bribe for VIP treatment in jail: DIG report. Click here to read.
The report kicked up a storm with Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah ordering a probe and the CM’s office issuing a notice to Roopa, asking her to refrain from commenting on the matter in media. The probe team has been given a month to complete the probe.
Commenting on the matter, Siddaramaiah had said: “I have issued a notice to Roopa for her repeated appearance before the media in violation of service rules. I have ordered a high-level inquiry into the allegations and will take action once the committee submits its report.”
“I welcome the reporting of corruption in the system, but Roopa is going to the media before raising it in the police department. It’s not fair.”
The report also claimed that the medical staff in the prison department supplied drugs to prisoners along with listing other irregularities in the prison. Roopa said stamp paper scam accused Abdul Kareem was also being provided special facilities.
“Earlier, he was on wheelchair and court allowed people for his assistance. But now, when he is fine, why is this continuing? In fact, three or four undertrials are there to serve him, who even gave him hands and feet massage,” the statement read.
Reacting to Roopa’s transfer, Opposition leader and former chief minister HD Kumaraswamy said: “Surprised. I think this govt (Karnataka govt) wants to protect illegal activities. Sasikala is lodged in the jail in connection with a disproportionate assets case
Four other officers have been transferred along with Roopa, including the state police intelligence chief M N Reddy. According to sources, Siddaramaiah had expressed anger on Sunday over the failure of the intelligence system in the prison affair and the communal tension in the coastal district of Dakshina Kannada.