Oh, good Ravi Batra is chiming back in!

Today he’s widely disseminating a letter in response to a request from the Joint Commission On Public Ethics that apparently asked him to return any documents fhe may possess from his time as a comissioner on the ethics board.

Batra, who resigned with a public flourish from JCOPE last month, never indicates whether he has any of the documents in question. Instead, he suggests that he wouldn’t give them up anyway, calling it an “illegal” request that he’s confused by.

Turning to your request for the return of “any documents and materials in your possession relating to [JCOPE], including any copies that you may have made.” I am perplexed by this illegal request. I note that you don’t cite any legal authority for this request, as there is none. Indeed, you don’t even cite a commission vote, albeit, it would be non-binding.

As with any Batra letter, it’s not entirely clear what’s happening, nor does really spell out what’s at issue.

“I cannot assist in any desire to cover-up all that has gone wrong and prevent the public’s right to know,” he wrote in the letter. “Given the continuing confidentiality bar I live with, my ability to speak the full truth requires a judge’s order, an independent investigator’s subpoena or inter alia, a legislative subpoena.”

Batra, an appointee of Senate Democratic Minority Leader John Sampson, had been an outspoken if not colorful commissioner on the newly created ethics watchdog, claiming that the panel lacked independence from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

JCOPE_doc return_20121015162322