Hyderabad, Jul 20: A retired IAS officer BV Papa Rao today filed a criminal case against Andhra Pradesh Minor Irrigation Minister TG Venkatesh for making certain "inflammatory and provocative" statements against bureaucrats and exhorting people to "shoot" (non-performing) public servants.
Papa Rao, who served as Home Secretary of Assam and also with the United Nations during his career, said in his complaint to Medchal police under Cyberabad Police Commissionerate, that the minister's statements attracted criminal liability under Sections 189 and 124 A, read with Sections 107, 115, 503 and 511 of Indian Penal Code.
It may be recalled that Venkatesh, while addressing a public meeting in his native Kurnool on Jul 13, remarked that non-performing bureaucrats should be shot dead. After the remarks kicked up a controversy, the minister remained unapologetic and went on to say that even non-performing politicians should also be shot dead. He also refused to retract his statements, Papa Rao said, attaching various newspaper reports quoting the eccentric minister.
"It clearly indicates that Venkatesh does not believe in Rule of Law. A minister, who has taken a solemn oath to function in accordance with Constitution of India, making such public statements, will have serious and dire consequences on our criminal justice system," Papa Rao pointed out.
"The minister, being a publicly elected member of the legislature, is in an immensely persuasive position in the society. By making such provocative remarks, the minister clearly encourages gullible public to take the law in to their own hands. He has endangered the lives of the government officials, who according to him are non performers," the retired bureaucrat contended.
The minister, after having made the statements, went on to clarify and reiterate the same.
"Therefore, condoning or showing laxity to the criminal act will only multiply these actions and would render such actions an accepted pattern in the society. Such statements if gone unchecked and unpunished would lead to more people making statements on similar lines and that would ultimately destroy the constitutional fabric of the society," the retired IAS officer cautioned.
The AP IAS Officers Association lodged a strong protest with the Chief Minister against Venkatesh. The Chief Minister, though did not react when the IAS officers met him, later told reporters that ministers should desist from making such statements.
Meanwhile, Medchal Station House Officer A Rami Reddy said they have not registered a First Information Report yet on Papa Rao's complaint. "We are obtaining legal opinion and based on that we will take necessary action," Rami Reddy said.