Government announces CID probe into IAS officer DK Ravi’s death

Bangalore(PTI): Refusing to concede the Opposition demand for a CBI probe, Karnataka Government on Tuesday announced a CID inquiry into the death of an upright IAS officer DK Ravi, who allegedly committed suicide under mysterious circumstances, as the issue rocked the state Assembly.

Not satisfied with Chief Minister Siddaramiah’s reply, opposition BJP and JDS members stormed into the well of the House and staged a dharna, raising slogans against the government for “failing” to protect honest officials.

As the Opposition raised the issue, Siddaramiah said as per police account it is prima facie a case of suicide, but the government will investigate it impartially to unravel the mystery behind the officer’s death.

“Is it a suicide or a murder or has he died of some other reasons, we also want to know the truth. People should also know it,” Siddaramaiah said, asserting that the city police were also efficient.

He said the case would be probed by Crime Investigation Department and “it will bring out the truth. We will have an impartial probe,” he said triggering protests from opposition benches as their demand for a CBI probe was not accepted.

Home Minister K J George also said the preliminary report will be placed before the House in the next 15 days.

George’s statement that some clues had been obtained by police in their preliminary probe that there could be some personal reasons for the suicide evoked protests from the opposition.

Earlier, Opposition BJP Leader Jagadish Shettar demanded a CBI inquiry into the matter as he suspected a case of murder, not suicide as claimed by police.

Protests marked by stray incidents of stone pelting erupted during a bandh in Kolar district, even as police said they were probing his death from “every angle”.

Angry protesters in Kolar district where 35-year-old DK Ravi had taken on the sand mafia as Deputy Commissioner before being posted as Additional Commissioner of Commercial Taxes (Enforcement) in Bengaluru, also blocked a National Highway placing burning tyres before being chased away by police. The house of local MLA in Kolar Varthur Prakash was stoned but police rushed and dispersed the protesters, police said.

The protesters, including some political leaders, are demanding a CBI probe into what they allege is the mysterious death of Ravi, who on his posting in Bengaluru had taken on the land mafia cracking down on them for tax evasion. Bengaluru Police Commissioner MN Reddi said that forensically, medically and examination of the situation all point to “prima facie understanding of a suicide.” He said Ravi was a “bold officer” and it was natural for people to think he was not a person to have committed suicide.

But, he added, “let us wait for the medical report…no single angle will be untouched…. every angle will be covered.”

Ravi, a Karnataka cadre officer of 2009 batch, who had taken on the sand mafia as Deputy Commissioner of Kolar district, had struck a chord with the people for being an honest and responsive officer.

He was posted as Additional Commissioner of Commercial Taxes in October from Kolar which had then evoked strong protests from the local people. Police have announced a special investigation team, headed by Deputy Commissioner of Police (South-East) Rohini Katoch, who is a medical doctor by qualification, to probe the case.