The day saw heated arguments from both sides when the bail plea of M. Sivasankar, senior IAS officer and former secretary to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, was moved. At the end of the day, the court said that it will deliver its orders on Tuesday and remanded him to the district jail, here on Thursday.
Sivasankar was in the custody of the Enforcement Directorate since October 29 after his anticipatory bail plea was rejected by the Kerala High Court and on three occasions, his ED custody was extended.
On Thursday, while the counsel for Sivasankar argued his case, stating that he has done no wrong, the ED submitted fresh evidences against Sivasankar in a sealed cover, which explained in detail the role of one of the most powerful officers in the state, ever since Vijayan assumed office in May 2016.
The ED went to the extent of stating in the court that the prime accused in the gold smuggling and Life Mission cases, Swapna Suresh, was being used by Sivasankar who knew everything what was happening.
The Customs had arrested P.S. Sarith, a former employee of the UAE Consulate here, on July 5 for allegedly smuggling gold in a diplomatic baggage destined for the Consulate. Another former Consulate staff, Swapna Suresh, and her associate Sandip Nair were also arrested by the National Investigation Agency from Bengaluru.
Vijayan removed Sivasankar as his Principal Secretary and then as IT Secretary after it surfaced that Swapna and Sivasankar were allegedly close friends.
Vijayan has all along said that he had no clue of what was happening, but the principal opposition parties - Congress and BJP - have alleged that Vijayan knew everything and is now scared that the probe may enter his office. The ED has asked his assistant private secretary C.M. Ravindran to appear before the agency, which he has not done as he has turned Covid positive.
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