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After son-in-law, former CJI's brother under fire for 'assets'

After son-in-law, former CJI's brother under fire for 'assets'

Author: Agencies
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: January 4, 2011
URL: http://www.indianexpress.com/story-print/733248/

Further trouble is brewing for former Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan as his younger brother K G Bhaskaran, Special Government Pleader in the Kerala High Court, was today asked by the state Advocate General to either demit office or go on leave following allegations of amassing wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income.

It is understood Bhaskaran has gone on medical leave.

Bhaskaran was appointed special government pleader to defend cases against Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

Following directions from AG Sudhakara Prasad, Bhaskaran agreed to go on medical leave, sources in the AG's office said.

As Bhaskaran had not been attending office since court reopened after vacation yesterday, his leave application was sent by a special messenger to him.

According to media reports, Bhaskaran had purchased about 60 acres of land in Dindigul in Tamil Nadu in 2005-06 in the name of his wife, 4 children and K G Praveen, a close relative of justice Balakrishnan and had built a farmhouse on it. The property is reportedly up for sale.

There were also reports that Bhaskaran and his wife Ratnaamma, a retired judicial magistrate, were building a palatial house in Puthen Kurushu in Ernakulam distirct and that he had spent over Rs 1 crore to build it.

Bhaskaran had said the media reports were 'exaggerated'.

Justice Balakrishnan's son-in law P V Sreenijan, an advocate and former Youth Congress state vice president, is also in the thick of controversy after reports emerged that he had amassed properties worth several crores in a span of four years from 2006.

Former Supreme Court justice V R Krishna Iyer has demanded a judicial probe into the allegations against K G Balakrishnan's family members.

The second son-in-law of Balakrishnan, M J Benni, has also come under a shadow with sections of the local media reporting that he had purchased plots of prime land on the suburbs of Kochi within a span of two years.

Meanwhile, Malayalam television channel Asianet today telecast more reports of properties amassed by Justice Balakrishnan's family members.

In the five months from February to June 2009, Justice Balakrishnan's sons-in-law Sreenijan and Benny and Bhaskaran had also purchased several landed property worth crores in various parts of Kochi, the report stated.

UDF convenor P P Thankachaan and CPI state secretary C K Chandrapann have said that Justice Balakrishnan should resign from the post of the National Human Rights Commission's chairperson and face an inquiry.

Former chief minister Oommen Chandy, who heads the Congress-led UDF in the Assembly, said the front would not criticise the government's action to go in for a probe against Sreenijan.

UDF convener P P Thankachan echoed the similar view saying that persons holding high positions should step down when confronted with allegations such as these.

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