KM Mani
Vigilance gives clean chit to KM ManiKM Mani/Facebook

Kerala's vigilance and anti-corruption bureau have closed the bar bribery scam against state Finance Minister KM Mani.

Investigating Officer SP R Sukeshan submitted the final 54-page report to the vigilance court on Tuesday, 7 July, giving a clean chit to the veteran minister.

According to the final report submitted to Special Judge John Illekadan, the investigators have claimed there is no convincing evidence to accuse the Chairman of Kerala Congress for accepting or requesting bribe from the bar owners.

The statements of the association's working president Biju Ramesh and 337 others have also been included in the final report, and none of them testified that Mani had received the alleged bribe.

Although the bar association members had met Mani at his residence in Palai, Kottayam, with ₹15 lakh, the association's record states that it was legal aid fund collected from them at the Cochin office.

Earlier, Biju's driver Ambili had also claimed that his employer had given ₹10 lakh to association president Rajkumar Unni, who then took it to the Cliff House, the official residence of Kerala CM Oommen Chandy. However, during the polygraph test, his statements were observed to be contradictory and invalid.

Investigators have also mentioned that the audio CD submitted by Biju is invalid.

In October 2014, Mani was alleged to have collected a bribe amount of ₹1 crore from bar owners to renew a bar licence in Kerala. The scam had rocked the ruling UDF Government in the state.