Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister late J Jayalalithaa's aide VK Sasikala, and her sister-in-law J Ilavarasi, are among those named in a new charge sheet filed by the Karnataka Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) with regard to a case registered over alleged preferential treatment given to them at the Parappana Agrahara Central Prison in Bengaluru.
A public interest litigation (PIL) was filed by social worker KS Gita in Chennai in 2021 and was taken up for hearing by a division bench of Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justice Suraj Govindaraj.
The petitioner asked for the report based on the findings of a retired Indian Administrative Service officer Vinay Kumar who investigated the allegations of preferential treatment given to Sasikala and her sister-in-law J Ilavarasi.
The petitioner had asked for a detailed report from the prison authorities for a final report that led to Sasikala allegedly being given preferential treatment in the Karnataka prison.
A 295-page report by the retired IAS officer in 2019 stated that a separate kitchen was being run for Sasikala and Ilavarasi at the Parappana Agrahara Central Prison where she was lodged for four years.
Gita had added that no final report in the probe was submitted so far.
The charge sheet, filed on Wednesday, named six people, including four officials of the prison department – Krishna Kumar, Dr R Anitha, B Suresh, and Gajaraja Makanooru, besides VK Sasikala and Ilavarasi.
The investigation done by Vinay Kumar confirmed what former Deputy Inspector General of Prisons D Roopa had said in 2017. In a report she had submitted to the then Director General of Police (DGP) of HN Sathyanarayana Rao, Roopa had said that there was a talk that Rs 2 crore had been handed over for Sasikala to get preferential treatment in prison. However, the DGP rejected these claims and D Roopa was transferred to another post.
Sasikala had served a four-year sentence in the disproportionate assets case. She was released from prison in January 2021.
(Published in an arrangement with The News Minute.)