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M Sivasankar (File picture)

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM/KOCHI: Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday engaged in some fast harm management by forcing his principal secretary, IAS officer M Sivasankar, to stop as a gold smuggling racket involving diplomatic channels threatened to reveal the alleged complicity of the chief minister’s workplace (CMO) within the crime.
Sivasankar, who was additionally IT secretary, utilized for a yr’s depart and was instantly granted the identical after UDF and BJP levelled critical allegations in opposition to him in reference to the principle accused, Swapna Suresh, who’s on the run. It was alleged that Sivasankar was answerable for recruiting Swapna to a plum submit within the IT division, a portfolio held by Vijayan, regardless of a doubtful background and a pending crime department inquiry in opposition to her in a forgery case.
The CM vehemently denied any wrongdoing on the a part of the CMO and stated his authorities welcomed any probe. “When allegations had been levelled in opposition to Sivasankar by linking him with the controversial lady, he was faraway from the submit. Nonetheless, the allegations should not legally tenable. However there have been a number of remarks in society linking him to the girl. Such a person shouldn’t be a part of the CMO at this juncture. Therefore, we took such a choice,” Vijayan stated.
At a information convention on Tuesday night, the CM, nevertheless, utterly evaded or refused to reply pointed questions on the extent and nature of Swapna’s contact with Sivasankar and whether or not or not the CM ought to take some type of ethical accountability for what occurred.
On Sunday, based mostly on particular intelligence, customs detected 30kg of gold hid in home items in a diplomatic baggage that was seized at Thiruvananthapuram worldwide airport. Customs authorities took the ministry of exterior affairs’ permission earlier than opening the bag within the presence of officers from the UAE consulate. The valuable metallic was hidden in a door lock, pipe, automobile tyre pump and a speaker, sources stated.
Sarith Kumar, a former PRO within the UAE consulate who had tried to obtain the cargo by claiming to be a consulate employees, was arrested after questioning. Sarith, an confederate of Swapna, had been receiving the cargo for the consulate on the airport for the previous one yr.
State BJP chief Ok Surendran alleged that the primary name to guard Swapna was from the CMO, whereas chief of opposition within the meeting, Ramesh Chennithala, demanded a CBI probe in a letter written to the PM. Following the controversy, the IT division terminated Swapna’s contract on Monday.
Surendran alleged that Vijayan is aware of Swapna since 2017. “She is a daily presence within the corridors of energy in Thiruvananthapuram and is acquainted to the CPM leaders,” he stated.

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