Nation

Gold smuggling case: Vijayan’s ex-Secy appears before Customs

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s former Principal Secretary Sivasankar arrived at the Customs office on Friday for questioning in the gold smuggling case. This is the second time that Sivasankar is appearing before the Customs officials. He has already been interrogated by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and also the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

The gold smuggling case was unearthed when P.S. Sarith, a former employee of the UAE Consulate here, was arrested by the Customs Department on July 5, when he was allegedly facilitating the smuggling of 30 kg of gold in the diplomatic baggage to Thiruvananthapuram from Dubai.

The case turned murkier when the name of Swapna Suresh, a former employee of the Consulate, and currently working at the state IT Department, surfaced and more so, when her links with Sivasankar, got revealed.

Apart from the gold smuggling case, the accused have also been found to have crucial links in the pet project of Vijayan — ‘Life Mission’ project in Thrissur, where the flats were being built with the funds of the UAE based charity organisation ‘Red Crescent’.

On Wednesday, in a 303-page preliminary charge sheet of the ED — in the testimony of Swapna — it surfaced that Vijayan was aware of her posting in the Space Park and she in the company of Sivasankar — who she has termed as her mentor — met Vijayan six times. Vijayan all through has maintained that he was not aware of her job under his IT department.

Meanwhile, the state secretariat of the CPI-M is meeting in the state capital to take stock of the latest developments in the wake of the revelation that has come out of the ED charge sheet.

By IANS

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