A local court in Panaji has asked Goa police to file a case of alleged financial irregularities at the 2014 International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa.
In a complaint filed in 2015, Goa Forward Party (GFP) general secretary (organization) Durgadas Kamat alleged irregularities in the bills raised for IFFI which resulted in a loss of Rs 5 crore to the state exchequer. He said he had lodged a personal complaint with the magistrate as the police did not take cognizance of his complaint.
“The allegations made in the complaint are of a serious nature which involves huge amount of money and hence, the respondent has to conduct a detailed investigation on the basis of the evidence available. The manner in which the respondent has already investigated seems to be merely eye-washing and has not been taken seriously. It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. ”
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The court ordered that an FIR be filed under sections 408 (criminal breach of trust by a government employee) and 419 (fraud with knowledge of unjustified loss). The magistrate said, “I have seen that there is an absolute need for a thorough investigation into the matter to uncover the truth about the allegations made in the case.”
On April 6, the court asked the state government to submit the files of all the cases related to this allegation. The court was told they were handed over to a special public prosecutor who died in 2018. The court noted that the special public prosecutor had died and that “case papers remained with him and the file could not be found despite police efforts.” “The court said there is no evidence to show that the files were handed over to the prosecutor and that the destruction of the case files is not a specific police case.
“Even otherwise, while the current proceedings are pending, the records of the respondent regarding the investigation of this crime should not be destroyed. It is also not the case of the defendant that the final report on the said offense has been filed and therefore the question of destruction of investigation papers does not arise, ”the court said.
The court asked the police to submit a monthly report of the case.