K’taka minister suspends 2 ‘corrupt’ officials

Patna: Karnataka Minister BC Patil and MLA Murugesh Nirani.(File)

Bengaluru, (Asian independent) Karnataka Mines and Geology Minister Murugesh Nirani on Wednesday directed to suspend two officials in Bagalkot district for allegedly encouraging illegal mining activities.

The minister took the action after receiving written complaints from mining companies against the two officials accused of indulging in corruption and encouraging illegal activities in Bagalkot district, which also happens to be his home district.

According to a statement released by Nirani’s office here, the suspended officials are B.M. Lingaraju, Deputy Director, Mines and Geology Department, Chitradurga and Fayaz Ahmed Sheikh, Geologist, Deputy Director’s Office, Mines and Geology Department in Bagalkot.

The statement added that the minister had held a meeting with officials concerned and mining companies representatives on Tuesday and there only he had directed officials concerned to pass the order suspending these officials.

The statement added that Lingaraju indulged in corruption as well as harassing owners of stone quarrying companies when he was functioning as acting (in-charge) Deputy Director of Mines and Geology department in Bagalkot between October 2016 to September 2018.

Whereas Geologist Fayaz Ahmed Sheikh had been serving in Bagalkot since September 2014 and he too was accused of harassing quarry owners demanding huge quantities of bribe.

The statement added that following directions from the minister, the Mines and Geology Department Director, Ramesh D.S. has recommended Additional Chief Secretary (MSME & Mines), Commerce and Industries department further suspension of Lingaraju from his service.

Sheikh has also been suspended and ordered a departmental inquiry also, the statement said.

The duo is also accused of encouraging illegal activities and harassing the public.

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