CHENNAI: In a blow to former AIADMK minister S P Velumani, the Madras high court on Monday directed the directorate of vigilance and anti-corruption (DVAC) to complete the probe in a corruption case against him in 10 weeks and file a final report.
Rejecting Velumani’s plea for a copy of the preliminary report based on which the FIR was registered, the first bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice P D Audikesavalu said on Monday, “Law has to be allowed to take its own course. Upon completion of the investigation, a report will be filed and such report should be filed within 10 weeks in the form of a chargesheet or a final report.”
DVAC registered an FIR against the former local administration minister based on complaints of corruption by the DMK and anti-corruption NGO, Arappor Iyakkam, over allotting tenders in Chennai and Coimbatore corporations. In 2019, the DVAC filed a preliminary report before the court giving a clean chit to the former minister. The court, however, declined to close the pleas against Velumani.
Subsequently, after the change in government, the DVAC filed another report and submitted that the findings of a CAG report concur with the corruption allegations made against Velumani.
Later, an FIR was registered based on the complaints and raids were conducted at various places connected to Velumani, including in his Coimbatore residence.
The first bench on Monday said, “In course of the material being made over to Velumani under Section 127 of CrPC, if the preliminary report forms the basis for any of the charges sought to be framed, a copy of the report may be made over to Velumani and it will also be open to the relevant criminal court to consider whether the petitioner may also obtain a copy.” “It is made clear that the observations in course of the order should not count against Velumani, if ultimately any chargesheet were to be filed against them,” the judges said.