An old corruption case has come back to haunt Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, with the high court refusing to quash a five-year-old FIR against him. The case relates to alleged illegal denotification of land for an IT corridor way back in 2006, against which a private complaint was filed in 2013 in the Lokayukta Court.
Though Yediyurappa had petitioned the high court last year to get the FIR quashed as the probe had not progressed at all over five years, the court held that the lokayukta investigation clearly shows that the delay was intentional and deliberate.
The high court order on Tuesday states that the lokayukta police seems to have succumbed to pressure from the chief minister's office. It adds that an independent body such as the lokayukta has a duty to "investigate the misconduct of public servants objectively, and cannot give rise to the impression to the general public that it is playing Into the hands of political bigwigs."
The court further said the delay by the lokayukta calls for action against it, but the judge was refraining from doing so as it might prejudice the investigation.
However, considering the "laxity" by the lokayukta police, the high court ordered the designated lokayukta magistrate to monitor the investigation.
The case relates to denotifying about 17 acres of government land worth crores in favour of private individuals for an IT corridor. The FIR is lodged under the Prevention of Corruption Act.