In an embarassment to the state government, the Andhra Pradesh High Court today asked it to reconsider the transfer of the Anti-Corruption Bureau(ACB) officer who was heading the probe into the dealings and links of the liquor syndicate. A Di
vision Bench which also included Chief Justice Madan B Lokur said this while hearing an interlocutory application moved by a petitioner in the face of growing criticism to the transfer of K Srinivas Reddy, an IPS officer, to the coastal security wing early this month.
The state government was directed to inform the court by April 27 its stand on bringing back Reddy to his post.The petitioner alleged that in order to whittle down the ongoing probe into the liquor scandal, the government had deliberately transferred Reddy, the Investigating Officer(IO) who had taken on the liquor mafia in the state. The state government is under pressure from various political quarters to somehow dilute the ongoing investigation, the application alleged.
The petitioner expressed apprehension that the change of the IO might result in benefiting such people who have gothigh political links and who are involved in the scandal neck-deep. The Chief Justice initially expressed his reluctanceto interfere with the Government’s executive powers as regards to the transfer of officers.
However, he later said the Government would have been better advised if it had not given room for any suspicions about its intention in transferring Reddy. The Chief Justice asked the Government to reconsiderthe move in view of the issues raised by the petitioner and criticism in public over the transfer issue. He directed the Government to express its view on the question of bringing back Reddy to take up further investigation into the matter. The case was posted to April 27 for further hearing.