Thiruvananthapuram: In a major relief for Finance Minister K.M. Mani, Vigilance ADGP Sheikh Darvesh Sahib Friday rejected the investigating team's report citing lack of evidence against him in the bar bribery case.
The ADGP took the decision to reject the probe report based on the legal advice given by Vigilance legal advisor C C Augustin.
With this, the Vigilance is unlikely to file chargesheet against Mani in the case.
In October last year bar owner Biju Ramesh went live on a TV channel and claimed that Mani was given Rs. one crore as bribe to ensure that the closed bars will be opened.
The Left opposition was quick to latch on. Following a demand by former chief minister V.S. Achuthanandan, the Kerala government handed over the case to the vigilance department.
As part of the probe, the vigilance department recorded the statements of Mani, his staff members, senior political leaders, bar owners, Ramesh and his driver.
Mani has won every assembly election he has contested since 1965 and has presented 13 state budgets, both of which are national records.