The Karnataka State Human Rights Commission (KSHRC) has registered a case against the Chief Secretary of Karnataka Vijay Bhaskar, along with nine other IAS officers on April 29 after a complaint was filed by Karnataka Administrative Service (KAS) officer K Mathai.
The case has been registered for violating human rights of officer Mathai under Articles 14, 15 and 16 of the Constitution.
According to the complaint, Mathai alleges that he has been transferred 27 times in a span of 10 years in his service, as he had exposed a land scam in Mandya Urban Development Authority (MUDA) worth Rs 300 crore.
“I request your good offices to register a complaint against Principal Secretary, Department of Personnel and Administrative Reforms (DPAR) Services, Govt of Karnataka and to grant justice and proper compensation for the mental agony I was made to undergo,’’ says Mathai in a complaint to the KSHRC.
He says the KSHRC hesitated to accept his complaint stating that it has no jurisdiction in the case. “I explained and convinced the KSHRC officials that government employees too have rights and violation of their rights have to be treated as violation of human rights,’’ he says.
Mathai has alleged that IAS officers Gautam Bagadi, Anil Kumar, Shivakumar, EV Ramana Reddy, Vijaya Bhaskar, Hiremath, Srinivas, Anjum Parvez, M Lakshminarayana and G Kalpana had caused him undue mental harassment.
The KAS officer alleges that during his stint with MUDA, he had written a report of how the agency had lost Rs 300 crore income due to illegal allotment of land. “This is vindictive action. I was charged on false grounds by DPAR Services alleging that I had gone on leave without prior permission, while I have documents to prove that I had (permission). I was transferred to serve as Special Land Acquisition Officer in Hoovinahadagali but the Mandya DC did not let me go stating election code and now they have withheld my pay,” K Mathai says.
Mathai also alleges that his promotion has been withheld since 2012, as he had exposed a Rs 2,000 crore scam in the BBMP when he was serving as the head of advertising in the civic body. He also states that DPAR falsely accused him of weakening the SAKALA system. SAKALA system was introduced by the Karnataka government in 2011 to ensure that all government services are streamlined digitally.
He mentions that former BBMP Commissioner Lakshminarayana had recommended to the Chief Secretary that Mathai was not a reliable officer as he had exposed the Rs 2,000 crore scam in the BBMP.
“I had served as the tehsildar of Yadgiri taluk and after four months, I was transferred to MUDA. DPAR had granted permission to conduct an inquiry against me for corruption, when the person accused was the tehsildar who served before me. All this was done as I did not have political patronage,” he adds.
He also says that he had written a letter to Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy asking for an appointment so he could discuss the issues. “Despite multiple requests, the Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary of DPAR did not grant me an appointment,” he says.
When TNM contacted the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO), the officials refused to comment. TNM also tried to reach out to the office of the Principal Secretary of DPAR but did not receive any response.
“I have suffered mental agony because of my fight against corruption. I consider a letter written by the then Minister for Housing Dr M H Ambareesh (dated 24-5-2014) as the source for my frequent transfers and problems. The government transferred me 27 times in 10 years. This is pure revenge. I’m being targeted for preparing a report on the land scam in Mandya Urban Development Authority (MUDA),’’ he alleges.