Scribe's death:Kerala IAS officer's suspension extended
Thiruvananthapuram,Oct 9 (PTI) The Kerala government has
extended the suspension of IAS officer Sriram Venkitaraman who
was accused of driving a car in an inebriated condition,
claiming the life of a journalist here on August 3.
Sriram's suspension has been extended, government
sources told PTI.
Venkitaraman, who is under suspension since August, had
in his explanation to Chief Secretary Tom Jose earlier stated
that he had not driven the car at the time of the accident and
had not consumed liquor.
The officer was arrested on August 3, nearly 17 hours
after the luxury car driven by him while returning from a
private party, hit journalist K Muhammed Basheer killing him
on the spot.
    A Special Investigation Team is probing the case.
    Basheer, 35, Thiruvananthapuram Bureau Chief of
Malayalam daily 'Siraj' was on his way home from work and had
stopped his motorcycle to attend a call when the car hit him.
    Venkitaraman, a doctor himself, had allowed police to
collect his blood sample for chemical examination 9 hours
after the accident and after getting himself admitted to a
private hospital here. His blood test had come out negative.
    This was despite eyewitnesses stating before
television cameras that the officer was in a "highly
intoxicated" state.
    It was after Basheer's family and media protested over
the "five star treatment" being given to him that Venkitaraman
was shifted to Thiruvananthapuram Medical college hospital's
Surgical intensive care unit.
    Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had made it clear that
position and rank would not be a hindrance for police to take
action against erring officials. PTI UD

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)