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Kerala IAS officers trade corruption charges

Thiruvananthapuram,June 23 (): IAS officers in Kerala are divided with two camps alleging corruption charges against each other and providing fodder to the opposition.

Chief secretary Bharat Bhushan is pitted against a few IAS officers who have complained about his interference and writing averse remarks in their appraisal reports. As much as eight corruption charges are received by the IAS Association. The association has met the CM and handed over the complaints to be investigated.

The tussle between the chief secretary and IAS officers had broken out after IAS officer Raju Narayanaswamy filed a complaint against the chief secretary before the IAS Association that Bhushan was harassing him as he turned down a telephonic request in 2007 that he should halt demolition of illegal resorts in Munnar since it was his benami investment. Bhushan denied the charges.

Raju Narayanaswamy’s letter was leaked to the media. Bharat Bhushan had even overruled the orders of the CM who asked for the expunction of adverse remarks against him in the Annual Performance Report . He further alleged that the chief secretary wrote to the Accountant General to treat his leave from January 28, 2013 to June 16, 2013 as unauthorized.

Swamy claims that he got the required permission from the then chief secretary to visit as election observer to other states. Chief secretary Bhushan had ordered a vigilance inquiry against Raju so that he cannot take up a central job. Bhushan pointed out that he had done only as per All India Services Conduct Act since Swamy’s election duties took him away from State for a long time.

The issue will be probed by Additional chief secretary KM Abraham appointed by CM to look in the background of Raju Narayanaswamy’s complaint and how it was leaked to the media.

Interestingly, the issue took a turn as Bhushan asked IAS Association president Tom Jose to provide details of a land transaction. This too was leaked to the media.

Today, Jose in his reply gave details of it to the media and said that the leak was made to cast a cloud on him even as he had given details before. The then chief secretary P Prabhakaran had termed it violation of all-India services conduct rules as all officers have to intimate the government about loans they have taken. Jose did not report it.

Bhushan took it a step forward and sought details including PAN numbers of those who helped him close the loan in a short time. Following this, the IAS officers met the chief minister and handed over a letter levelling complaints against Bhushan. They said that it is the ministers who have to give performance report of the secretaries and Bhushan exceeded his brief by giving a report to Centre on ADGP rank police officers and bypassed Home Minister.

Opposition said that Bhushan as DGCA got an airline company to pay the fees of his daughter’s study abroad. More dirty linen will be washed in public in the coming days.