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MLA booked for abusing young bureaucrat
By Ashraf Padanna February 12, 2019
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TRIVANDRUM: The Kerala Women’s Commission has booked senior ruling party legislator S. Rajendran for verbal abuse on a young woman officer preventing land grab.

A spokesperson of the panel said it registered the case for his remarks last week against Dr Renu Raj, the sub-collector in charge of touristy Munnar.

The attack on the young officer who joined the Indian civil services barely four years ago had triggered outrage forcing him to say sorry for his verbal abuse.

Dr Raj, who is now on a mission to clear the hill station of rubbish and land-grabbers, said she had sent reports to her superiors and the Kerala High Court which had in 2010 ordered stern action against land grabbers in Munnar.

The three-time legislator who belongs to the Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI-M had succeeded in driving out two of her immediate predecessors who tried to evict them.

Dr Raj, who entered the Indian Administrative Services (IAS) with a second rank while working as a doctor at a government hospital, she would evict all encroachers.

She said she was also expecting a court order to act against lawmaker Joyce George, also belonging to the ruling bloc, facing similar charges.

“He threatened me on the phone (against stalling an illegal construction) and said it would go on, come what may. I politely said I would then be forced to act,” she said.

“I have been working on a directive from the HC came two weeks back. I have also reported this (the threat) to (her superiors) the revenue secretary and collector.”

After the telephonic conversation, the legislator came to the site where the officials stopped construction and started abusing her. He also stopped revenue officials.

“She doesn’t have brains. Just because she is an IAS, she is trying to act smart. People who study only to become a collector will only have that much brain,” he said.

He later told a local television channel that he didn’t mean to insult her and if his words had hurt anybody, he was sorry.

He also asserted that he would not allow officials to have their way and stop construction activities in the famed touristy town.

“I apologise if the people at large or women were hurt. But I stand firmly by my position on the construction of public utilities,” he said.

The officer also had a humble background, her father being a checker with the state-owned public transport corporation and her mother, homemaker.

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