Din hits Kerala assembly as opposition protests over gold smuggling case | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Din hits Kerala assembly as opposition protests over gold smuggling case

By, Thiruvananthapuram
Feb 25, 2022 12:32 AM IST

The Kerala assembly on Thursday witnessed uproar after Speaker MB Rajesh refused discussion on latest revelations by gold smuggling accused Swapna Suresh, saying the issue was pending before courts.

The Kerala assembly on Thursday witnessed uproar after Speaker MB Rajesh refused discussion on latest revelations by gold smuggling accused Swapna Suresh, saying the issue was pending before courts.

The Congress-led opposition brought an adjournment motion as soon as the House assembled and sought a reply from Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. (ANI)
The Congress-led opposition brought an adjournment motion as soon as the House assembled and sought a reply from Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. (ANI)

The Congress-led opposition brought an adjournment motion as soon as the House assembled and sought a reply from Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. But the Speaker insisted that since the case was pending before various courts and it was not ideal to discuss the case in the House.

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Upset with his stand, the UDF members rose from their seats raising slogans and trooped into the well of the House and displayed a banner that reads “the CM should break his silence over the infamous smuggling case. We need a discussion and fair probe”.

Though the Speaker requested them to go back to their seats, they paid no heed to his directions, following which a visibly annoyed Rajesh went out of the hall. The unfazed opposition was not ready to backtrack from their demand even when the House resumed after half an hour, when they finally announced that they were boycotting the whole day’s session. After boycotting the House, legislators staged a sit-in outside the assembly complex.

“It is strange that CPI(M) members often complain about lack of discussion in parliament. But in Kerala, they are scared of discussion. Our democratic rights were trampled by the Speaker and the ruling front,” said leader of opposition VD Satheesan. During the heated exchanges between treasury and opposition benches, the CM kept quiet.

But later the CM, while taking part in a debate on the motion of thanks to the Governor’s address, criticised the opposition and said they tried to create unnecessary rows raising weird issues against the government including the gold smuggling case.

He said even after the investigation by many central agencies with the support of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), two questions still remaining unanswered.

“The first question is who had smuggled the gold and the second is for whom it was brought here illegally… There is no answer to these questions even now. The Congress is not interested in seeking answers to these questions. The UDF is trying to tarnish the image of the government using the issue,” he said.

The recent sensational disclosure by gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh had triggered a political row in Kerala as opposition parties charged that the Chief Minister’s office was aware of the alleged smuggling of the yellow metal through the diplomatic channel and even critical intelligence inputs were misused for “anti-national activities”.

Suresh had told the media that an audio clip by her, circulated at a time when she was jailed claiming there was pressure upon her to say the name of the Chief Minister in the smuggling case, was a pre-scripted one.

She also said that it was recorded in a mobile phone handed over to her via a woman police constable when she was in the custody of Enforcement Directorate and alleged that M Sivasankar, the CM’s former principal secretary and an accused in the case, was behind the incident.

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