AIADMK General Secretary and convict V.K. Sasikala Natarajan was on Wednesday accused of bribing Karnataka Director General of Prisons (DGP) Satyanarayana Rao and city central jail officials for undue favours.
“Sasikala has given Rs 1 crore bribe to Rao and another Rs 1 crore was distributed among officials, including warden of the central jail where she is serving 4-year sentence in an illegal wealth case for allowing her special privileges,” said a local news channel that quoted Deputy Inspector of Prisons (DIG) Roopa Moudgil submitted to the state government.
While Roopa was not reachable to confirm the bribery and other charges, Rao, however, denied them and accused Roopa of gross subordination.
“I have served a memo to her (Roopa) seeking explanation and evidence to prove her wild allegations. She has not given any report to me or the government against me or other jail officials,” Rao said.
In a sensational revelation, Roopa said 59-year-old Sasikala was getting a royal treatment in the women’s cell where she has been lodged on February 15 to serve her sentence.
Co-convicts Sasikala’s sister-in-law Elavarasi and nephew V.K. Sudhakaran were also held guilty by a trial court in September 2014 and upheld by the Supreme Court on February 14 in the two-decade-old disproportionate assets case of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa.
“As a reward for bribing the prison authorities from Rao to jail warden, Sasikala gets special menu daily, cooked by special chefs in a special kitchen near the women’s cell,” Roopa is said to have mentioned in the report.
The 2000 batch IPS officer is the first woman in the southern state to have been recently (June 23) appointed DIG of the prisons department.
Alleging massive irregularities and rampant corruption in the central jail on the city’s southern outskirts, Roopa said drugs were being distributed to the inmates through various means and select prisoners were given special facilities.
The prison has been in the eye of a controversy involving Sasikala, who is serving term after being convicted in a disproportionate assets case and is being allowed to meet several visitors in violation of norms.