TRIVANDRUM : The Kerala high court on Monday gave the go-ahead to Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) to proceed against VA Arun Kumar, son of opposition leader V S Achuthanandan, in the cases related to corruption and other charges leveled against him.

The court has directed the Vigilance Director to initiate action on the report of their probe into the allegations made against Kumar as well as his father by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy when he was the leader of opposition in the State Assembly.
The allegations included violation of rules in his appointment and quick promotions to top posts in the Institute of Human Resources Development (IHRD) and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Academy, amassment of wealth beyond his known sources of income, unauthorised foreign jaunts and taking of bribe from sandalwood factory owners. The high court gave the nod while hearing a public interest petition filed against the slow progress in the investigations. The VACB informed the court that they had completed the probe and found substance in several charges against him. The VACB investigating team had submitted its final report on a direction from the court in September last year to expedite the probe in six months. It confirmed the findings of an Assembly committee over the appointments and promotions. The panel headed by V D Satheeshan of the Congress found that Kumar had manipulated documents and the government under Achuthanandan changed the criteria to suit his qualifications for elevating him to posts he is originally not qualified for. Kumar, a post-graduate in computer applications, became managing director of a state-run corporation at a young age and later became the joint director of the IHRD against prescribed norms.
The qualifications required for the posting in IHRD was a master’s degree in engineering and eight years of teaching experience. Chandy had raised 11 allegations of corruption and nepotism against the father-son duo.

T K Devasia

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