Kerala CM ordering probe against central investigation agencies shows his fear: MM Hassan
United Democratic Front (UDF) convenor MM Hassan on Saturday stated that Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had decided to conduct a judicial inquiry against the central agencies investigating gold smuggling and dollar smuggling cases "out of fear".
Terming it an election stunt, MM Hassan while addressing a press conference here said, "The state government does not have the power to take such a case. This is to subvert the current investigation."
He further said, "The decision to conduct a judicial inquiry against the central agencies investigating gold smuggling and dollar smuggling cases involving the Chief Minister and the Speaker is not correct, it is a farce."
The leader said it is a strange move and will not last for long. Hassan also alleged that when the inquiry was extended, the chief minister, speaker and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) party made a tie-up with the BJP at the national level.
"The government is playing the role of a confrontation with the central agencies. This is a drama. The chief minister is trying to dress up like a gentleman," he further added.
The Kerala Cabinet on Friday recommended a judicial probe against central investigation agencies subject to approval from the Election Commission, following an ongoing probe into several cases, including the Kerala gold smuggling case.
The decision was taken at a virtual cabinet meeting here chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
The Cabinet has appointed Retired Judge KV Mohanan as the Commissioner. He will consider the controversial audio recording of Swapna Suresh, the prime accused in the gold smuggling case, and a letter written by co-accused PS Sarith.
The Kerala gold smuggling case, which is being probed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA,) along with the Enforcement Directorate and the customs department, pertains to the smuggling of gold in the state through diplomatic channels.
The matter had come to light after 30-kilogram gold worth ₹14.82 crores, smuggled in a consignment camouflaged as diplomatic baggage, was busted by customs in Thiruvananthapuram on July 5 last year.
The customs department had also arrested Unitac Builders MD Santhosh Eappen also in a US Dollar smuggling case.