IAS officer called woman batchmate 44 times day he died, probe on: Police
On the day he committed suicide, 36-year-old IAS officer D K Ravi, whose death has triggered widespread protests and demands for a CBI probe, called a 2009 IAS batchmate as many as 44 times in the span of an hour, investigation of his call detail records by the police has revealed. The woman IAS officer, who has known Ravi since their IAS training days, has been approached by the police as part of the probe.
This interaction between Ravi and the woman IAS officer, who is married and posted in southern Karnataka, and their final conversations are a central part of the probe by the Criminal Investigation Department of the Karnataka police.
Ravi, a former additional commissioner of enforcement in the commercial taxes department, was found dead at his flat in Bangalore on the evening of March 16. The Congress government in Karnataka has so far stated that he committed suicide due to personal reasons. But the opposition wants a CBI probe since Ravi had taken tough action against land, sand and real estate mafia during his tenures as deputy commissioner in Kolar and additional commissioner, commercial tax.
Sources said Ravi frequently used to post about the achievements of the woman IAS officer on his Facebook page. Their friendship pre-dated his marriage to Congress politician Hanumantharayappa’s daughter Kusuma four years ago, sources said.
Sources said Ravi also sent texts to the batchmate prior to his death. Sources added that officials had spoken to the woman officer, who has a child, and she will be quizzed further about her conversations with Ravi.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, too, said during a meeting with a local newspaper that 44 phone calls had been made in the span of an hour by Ravi to a woman IAS officer before he is suspected to have committed suicide.
After the call details were revealed, the opposition attacked Siddaramaiah saying this was yet another reason to hand over the probe to the CBI. “What is the intent of revealing this information? How can the state CID investigate when this information has already been revealed,” JDS leader H D Kumaraswamy said. The opposition has accused the Congress of attempting to tarnish the image of a young, upright and honest IAS officer.
On Thursday, in the state legislature, the opposition BJP and JDS kept up their demand for a CBI probe and forced adjournment of the budget session till Monday. The opposition marched to the Raj Bhawan and petitioned Governor Vajubhai Vala for intervention. The Congress is depending on the CID to produce an interim probe report by Monday to satisfy the opposition. “The CID should have a report ready in three days and then everything should be evident,” home secretary S K Pattanayak said.