Some Contents of CAG Report on Missing Rifles Leaked Before It Was Even Tabled, Says Kerala Police Chief


Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala government on Friday alleged that some contents of the CAG audit report, which had come down on state police chief Loknath Behara, had been leaked even before it was tabled in the assembly.

The report, which came up before the house on February 12, had found 25 INSAS rifles and over 12,000 cartridges missing from the Special Armed Police battalion here and came down on the police chief for diversion of funds, violating guidelines.

In the normal course, after the report is tabled in the house, the media and others get it. “But this time even before it was tabled, there were doubts that some contents of the report had been leaked…

In the name of the CAG report, indulging in character assassination was not a good precedent”, Chief Secretary Tom Jose said in a statement tonight.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the assembly will be examining the report, which is regarding the activities of two governments from April 2013 to March 2018.

Pointing out that there are specific guidelines to take action based on CAG findings, the Chief Secretary said it was the violation of democratic propriety to put the officer under media trial.

Tom Jose, who was criticised by a section of the media for allegedly using a luxury car of the police department,said that as the head of various government departments, it was not wrong for the chief secretary to use the vehicle of any department and it was not illegal.

Police had on Thursday maintained that no rifles were missing as the crime branch probe had not revealed any missing INSAS rifles.

“The Crime Branch is once again doing a physical cross verification of all the weapons issued to the Special Armed Police (SAP).

Investigation is going on to trace the missing rounds,” a statement from the state police media centre had said. The opposition Congress led UDF are already up in arms against the government over the matter.

While KPCC president Mullapally Ramachandran on Friday demanded a judicial probe to unravel the ‘mystery’ behind the missing rifles and cartridges, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala sought a CBI probe against Behera and an NIA investigation into the missing rifles.

Ramachandran said in Kozhikode that a judge designated by the Kerala High Court Chief Justice should conduct a probe. Meanwhile, Behera met Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan in the backdrop of the serious allegations being faced by him and the department.

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