TN police intensify graft probe against ex-minister Velumani


Chennai, July 21 : The Crime Branch special team of Tamil Nadu police has intensified investigation into the corruption charges against former minister and AIADMK leader, S.P. Velumani after the first bench of the Madras High court provided 8 weeks time to the government to complete the probe and file a report. Sources in the Tamil Nadu state home department told IANS, "The High Court has given direction to the government to complete the probe within 8 weeks and provide a report on the corruption charges against S.P. Velumani and we have already commenced the investigation. We will register an FIR if necessary in the case." The anti-corruption NGO, Arappor Iyyakam had complained against the minister in awarding contracts of Chennai and Coimbatore corporations. The report of the Audit and Account General tabled in the Tamil Nadu assembly had also concurred with the allegations raised by the NGO. The First bench of the Madras high court comprising of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy has directed the state government to get into the bottom of the matter and to take action against those involved. It may be noted that the first bench of the Madras High Court had on June 21 dismissed a Vigilance and Anti Corruption report giving clean chit to the former minister and had mentioned that the state should constitute a Special investigation team and get to the bottom of the matter. The court had also dismissed a petition filed by the former Minister, S.P. Velumani on March 26 requesting contempt action against the NGO. The special investigation team constituted by the state government will be taking statements from the NGO, Arappor Iyyakam, the contractors who did the work at Chennai and Coimbatore corporations and the minister. A senior officer with the Police team told IANS, "We have already commenced the investigation as there is only a short period of 8 weeks before us. We will take depositions from the NGO, contractors, and the minister and will have a detailed look at the report of the CAG and then file a report." /IANS


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