Palmolein graft case: VS Achuthanandan seeks probe into Chandy's role

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  • Tuesday, October 15, 2013
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  • Source: TOI

    THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Opposition leader VS Achuthanandan has approached the Supreme Court seeking further inquiry into the palmolein graft case.

    The CPM leader on Saturday filed a petition in the court to probe the role of chief minister Oommen Chandy, who was the finance minister during the time of the controversial palmolein import, in finalising the deal. He requested the court to dismiss the vigilance report, acquitting Chandy of charges raised against him.

    The recent decision of the state government to wind up the case is learnt to have prompted Achuthanandan to approach the apex court. The prosecution had planned to approach the vigilance court, Thrissur, to close the case that dates back to 1991-'92 and Achuthanandan's petition will be a hurdle for the court to declare the case closed now.

    Though the vigilance had probed the role of Chandy in the case, it reported in the court that the allegations were baseless. Achuthanandan, in his petition, quoted the discharge petition filed by former food minister T H Mustafa, an accused in the case, which had alleged that Chandy had the same role as him in deciding about the import of palmolein at a higher price. He alleged that the government was trying to sabotage the palmolein case for saving the big names involved in it.

    The state government had, a few weeks ago, decided to withdraw the case to help senior bureaucrat Jiji Thomson, whose promotion had been withheld owing to the pending case. The same case had cost dear for former chief vigilance commissioner P J Thomas, who eventually had to quit the post.

    Sources close to Achuthanandan said he moved the apex court after receiving a legal opinion that there were loopholes in the report acquitting Chandy and in the process to close the case


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