The Karnataka government on Monday transferred D Roopa IPS, who as DIG Prisons had filed a report exposing irregularities in Bengaluru Central Jail. ADGP Prisons, H N Sathyanarayana Rao, who was accused of corruption, has also been transferred. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah deemed it an 'administrative decision'.
"It is an administrative decision. Should the media be informed of all decisions that have been taken for better administration?" asked Chief Minister Siddaramaiah when asked about the transfers. Later in the day, the Chief Superintendent of Bengaluru Central Prison, Krishna Kumar was also transferred without posting.
In less than a month after she took over as the DIG Prisons, D Roopa has been transferred to the post of Commissioner for traffic and road safety. The transfer comes at a time when IPS officer Roopa's report exposed how prisoners, including Sasikala Natarajan and Abdul Karim Telgi, had been receiving special treatments at the Bengaluru Central Prison. Roopa had alleged that there were rumours of Sasikala paying bribes up to Rs 2 crore to get special privileges including a special kitchen inside the jail complex. Her report also nails the thriving drugs supply and consumption within the jail complex.
The transfer also comes at a time when the Karnataka government has ordered a probe into the report and counter allegations levelled after the report was filed. A source from the government maintained that the transfers were routine to ensure that the investigation is fair and balanced.
Political fight over transfer
The government maintained that the officer was not transferred as punishment. "There are some rules in place. No officer is allowed to go to the media. An investigation is underway and all allegations will be probed. A fair investigation will be done," said D K Shivakumar, Karnataka power minister.
The opposition, however, claimed that the move showed the government was not interested in curbing illegal activities. "I am surprised. I think this government wants to protect illegal activities," said former Karnataka Chief Minister and State president of JD(S) HD Kumaraswamy.