Sasikala gave Rs 2 cr to Karnataka prison officials for VIP treatment: Report
There are allegations that 59-year-old Sasikala is getting ‘royal treatment’ in the women’s cell of a Karnataka jail where she has been lodged in connection with a graft case.india Updated: Jul 13, 2017 17:00 IST
AIADMK leader VK Saiskala was being given special treatment in a Bengaluru jail in exchange of Rs 2 crore she paid to Karnataka’s top prison officer and jail staff, a senior police officer has said.
In her letter, Karnataka’s deputy inspector general of prisons Roopa D Moudgil accused her boss HN Sathyanarayana Rao of accepting the bribe from the leader of the ruling faction of AIADMK in the neighbouring Tamil Nadu to extend undue favours to her.
“A separate kitchen has been set up for Sasikala, flouting prison rules,” Moudgil, who inspected the jail on July 10, said in the letter to director general of police (prisons) Rao.
Chief minister Siddaramaiah said on Thursday a probe had been ordered.
“We have taken serious cognizance of the allegation of irregularities in Bengaluru Central Prison & ordered a high level inquiry,” he tweeted, promising action against the guilty.
Roopa’s letter, a copy of which is with HT, also talks about various alleged illegal activities in the Bengaluru central prison.
Rao has denied the charges and accused Moudgil of “gross insubordination”.
“I have served her a memo because she was not present at the meeting with the chief minister and instead went to the prison,” Rao told media on Thursday.
He denied Sasikala was receiving special treatment, challenging Moudgil to prove her “absolutely false, baseless and wild” allegations.
Rao said if there were lapses, action would be taken.
The Supreme Court in February found Sasikala guilty of accumulating assets through illegal means, cutting short her dash for the top job in Tamil Nadu following the death of chief minister J Jayalalithaa on December 5.
A close aide of Jayalalithaa for 30 years, Sasikala surrendered on February 15 to serve the four-year sentence.
The trial in the corruption case, in which Jayalalithaa was also an accused, was moved to the neighbouring state of Karnataka to ensure free and fair proceedings.
Not just Sasikala, the officer also accused the prison authorities of flouting rules to favour Abdul Karim Telgi, convicted in a multi-crore stamp paper scam.
She said Telgi was given massage by undertrials.
“Six months ago the court said as Telgi requires a wheelchair, some helpers could be assigned to him but I have seen that he is walking without any trouble,” the letter says.
Rao said there was no evidence to back the charges.
“Even before the report was sent to senior officers, it was sent to news media,” he said. “We have not even obliged ministers who said they wanted to meet Sasikala,” he said, denying Sasikala had a kitchen to herself.
On Telgi, Rao said they were just following court orders.
Moudgil said she had made an internal report and sent it only to Rao. “I have sent it to my boss to look into these issues,” she told reporters but refused to talk about the bribery charge.
“This is not a complaint against my boss. It is my internal report, asking him to give attention and rectify,” she said.