iconimg Wednesday, July 08, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Thiruvananthapuram, August 13, 2013
The CPM-led opposition, LDF, called off its indefinite siege of the state secretariat over the solar scam on Tuesday after the UDF government announced a judicial probe into the issue. The LDF, however, maintained that it would continue its boycott of the chief minister Oommen Chandy till he resigned.

The last 48 hours witnessed one lakh protesting LDF volunteers converged in the state capital, crippling the administrative machinery and bringing the city to a standstill.

The probe announcement is just the kind of face-saving formula both the UDF and the LDF were looking for.

CPM state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said the state government had been forced to bend before a mass movement and finally agreed to order a judicial probe by a sitting judge of the high court.

The solar scam is the brainchild of a couple — Saritha and Biju Radhakrishnan — who made tens of crores of rupees by defrauding numerous people by convincing them to invest in the import of solar power panels and setting up windmill farms.

The schemes did not exist and this fraud continued for over a decade. In June this year, a TV channel released a phone call list of the CM’s office, which revealed several calls to Saritha. Though Chandy sacked two of his aides, the opposition never stopped baying for his blood.

“But our main demand is the resignation of the CM. We will show him black flags wherever he goes and boycott all his functions till he resigns,” said Vijanan on Tuesday. Chandy ruled out his resignation and said his government was open to any probe into the solar scam. “My government has nothing to hide.”