K.J. George on Monday rejoined the Siddaramaiah ministry in Karnataka, over two months after he resigned on July 18 following an FIR against him in the suicide case of a police officer.
Governor Vajubhai R. Vala administered the oath of office and secrecy to George at Raj Bhavan in the presence of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, some ministers and a few senior officials at a simple ceremony here.
George, 59, who was Bengaluru Development and Town Planning Minister when he resigned, is was reinstated in the same post.
The Congress high command consented to re-induction of George after the CID inquiry found no evidence of his role in the unnatural death of Mangaluru Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) M.K. Ganapathy on July 7 at Madikeri.
The opposition Bharatiya Janata Party and the Janata Dal-Secular, however, criticised Siddaramaiah for taking back George into the ministry on the basis of a clean chit given by the CID, which, they said, cannot be said to be impartial to probe such a complex case.
The CID on September 17 filed a report in the Madikeri local court, clearing George of the charge by Ganapathy that the minister was responsible for forcing him to take his own life.
George, a lawmaker from the Sarvagnanagar assembly segment in the city, was the state Home Minister before his portfolio was changed on October 31, 2015.
The court in Kodagu district on July 18 ordered police to file the FIR against George and two IPS officers A.M. Prasad and Pranab Mohanty, who were also named by Ganapathy for harassing him and driving him to commit suicide.
Ganapathy, 51, who was found hanging from a ceiling fan in a hotel room at Madikerei on July 7, had accused the trio in an interview to a local news channels hours before taking his life that they would be responsible "if anything happens to me".
The inquiry also cleared Prasad and Mohanty of the charge that they caused mental agony to Ganapathy, leading him to end his life.
The court order for an FIR came in response to a private complaint filed by Ganapathy's elder son Nehal under section 306 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).