oppn parties An Honest Officer Dies "Unnaturally"

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  • Media person Rajat Sharma resigns as DDCA president
  • Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress postpone meeting the governor of Maharashtra
  • Shiv Sena not to attend the NDA meeting on 17th November, says break up "a formality"
  • Shiv Sena says that the confidence the BJP is showing about forming the government in Maharashtra is based purely on its expectation of getting numbers through horse trading
  • Anil Ambani resigns as director of the bankrupt Reliance Communications
  • India beat Bangladesh by an innings and 150 rums inside three days in the first Test. Indian pacers excel after Mayank Agarwal's double century
  • Sena-NCP-Congress work out a common minimum programme, will form the government soon and it will last 5 years, says Sharad Pawar
  • Income Tax Appellate Tribunal upholds the decision to withdraw the charitable status of Young India, making it liable to pay Rs 145 in income tax. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Vadra are the majority shareholders in the company
  • CBI raids offices of Amnesty International across India
  • Supreme Court quashes NCLAT order against Arcelor Mittal and paves the way for the company to take over ailing Essar Steel
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says concerns of telcos will be addressed and no company will close down
  • Government thinking of providing higher insurance coverage on bank deposits
  • Mayank Agarwal scores a double century as India take firm grip on the first Test versus Bangladesh
  • Supreme Court warns Rahul Gandhi to be more careful in future but drops contempt proceedings in the "chor" case
  • In a flip-flop, Vodafone CEO says sorry to the government, sys no plan to exit India
Supreme Court dismisses plea for review in Rafale case, says no need for roving inquiry, maintains clean chit to government
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An Honest Officer Dies "Unnaturally"

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
The death of D K Ravi, a 2009 batch IAS officer from Karnataka, has once again exposed the lengths to which the sand mafia and other unscrupulous organized crime mafia’s masquerading as businessmen in Karnataka, as elsewhere in the country, can go to silence officers who go after it. Ravi was found hanging in his official flat in Bangalore. No suicide note was found.

Although Ravi had been transferred to Bangalore from Kolar where he had gone after the sand mafia, it is clear that his death has come under what is euphemistically called “under unnatural circumstances” in police parlance. His family has accused Congress MLA SN Narayanswamy of putting pressure on him to ignore illegal acts committed by realty firm Confident Group. They also alleged foul play in his death, though a preliminary autopsy has not revealed much to support this. The family has outrightly rejected the Karnataka government claim that Ravi committed suicide due to family problems.

It is rumoured that Ravi was going after builders in Bangalore who are notorious for evading taxes. Sources have also said that he was on the verge of making a damning disclosure that would have netted a big fish. But these are all speculations. What has happened is that the country has lost a young, honest and upright officer who always stood his ground against threats and political pressure.

The people in Karnataka are angry and have come out on the streets to protest. But the government is not moved. It is still treating the death as a simple case of suicide, refusing to allow the CBI to enquire into the circumstances leading to the death.

Time and again, the country has witnessed the nexus between the politico-business and hooligan class putting pressure on officers to bend. Those who bend are made to crawl next. They line up their pockets and those of their political masters, allowing the business and hooligan class to trample the rights of the citizens and cause immense loss to the exchequer. Those who refuse to bend are transferred in few months, like Ashok Khemka in Haryana. In the extreme cases, the lives of people like DK Ravi are snuffed out.

But enough is enough. There should always be an assumption of foul play in the “unnatural” death of any honest officer who has had a showdown with unscrupulous cartels in his duty period previously. The country cannot afford to lose young, upright officers who are its best bet for taking it forward. The worst part is that deaths such as that of Ravi are meant to scare off other honest officers. Do we want to become a country where honesty is grounded to dust by the unholy trinity of politicians, businessmen and hoodlums?

There should be an immediate CBI enquiry into Ravi’s death. All realtors in Bangalore should be deeply probed, with their accounts put under the scanner to see if Ravi was close to unearthing a huge tax evasion racket. The money chain should be tracked to expose political involvement. Congress MLA Narayanswany must be hauled over the coals to see if he was involved. The Karnataka government should not be allowed to brush the matter under the carpet.