Setback For IAS Officer By Kerala High Court In Drunk Driving Case

Kerala Government in its appeal contended that the murder charge will exist against the IAS officer.

Kochi:

The Kerala High Court on Friday stayed the lower court’s order of dropping the charge of murder against IAS officer Sriram Venkitaraman in connection to a case pertaining to the death of journalist, KM Basheer. 

The court has stayed it for two months.

Venkitaraman and another person were booked for causing the death of a journalist in a drunk driving case in 2019.

The interim order was issued by the Single Bench of Justice Ziyad Rahman AA on an appeal filed by the Kerala Government challenging the order of the lower court.

Kerala Government in its appeal contended that the murder charge will exist against the IAS officer.

The state government sought to set aside the order of Thiruvananthapuram District Sessions Court of dropping the charge of murder.

The sessions court dropped the murder charges after considering the discharge petitions of IAS officer Sriram Venkitaraman and co-accused Wafa Firoz, who was travelling with him on August 3, 2019, when the accident took place.

Sessions Court has dropped the offence under section 304 of IPC, which is a non-bailable offence with up to 10 years of imprisonment. The other charges against both of the accused are 304 A (causing death by negligence) and 279 (rash and negligent driving) of the IPC and sections 184, 185, and 188 of the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA).

The case pertains to the victim, KM Basheer, the bureau chief of a Malayalam newspaper, who was killed after his bike was hit allegedly by the car driven by the IAS officer in the night. The journalist was on his way to his home after duty.

A few months ago, the Kerala Government removed the IAS officer from the post of Alappuzha District Collector after his posting became a controversial issue. At present, he is posted at Kerala State Civil Supplies Corporation Limited as general manager. 

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