THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The UDF camp is in an upbeat mood after the gold smuggling case and the alleged nexus between the culprits and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office came to light. If the infamous solar scam during the Oommen Chandy government paved the way for the UDF’s rout in the last assembly elections, its leaders now claim the latest racket with international ramifications is a “poetic justice” for the CPM and LDF, which had used it to the hilt. Sensing the opportunity, the Youth Congress will hold protests across the state on Wednesday demanding a CBI probe into the smuggling case.
A few days ago when Congress MLA Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan said in a television channel debate that there is still time left for the UDF to bounce back for the electoral battle, little would he and the UDF camp have known that they would get a political weapon like this to hammer the LDF with. While Congress leaders are elated over the latest controversy which saw the CM’s secretary and principal secretary (IT), M Sivasankar, being stripped off his posts, former chief minister Oommen Chandy at first remained mum. Though he wanted to react to the alleged nexus between the accused, Swapna Suresh, and Sivasankar on Monday itself, leaders close to him advised him against it. A source close to Chandy told TNIE that the initial thought was why he himself should bring the ‘skeletons out of the closet’, referring to the solar scam.
Former KPCC president M M Hassan said Chandy’s reaction to the gold smuggling case that he is not rejoicing at the allegations levelled against the CM and his office now has been the most appropriate.
“None other than Oommen Chandy can come out with such a nuanced but hard-hitting reaction. The culprits behind the gold smuggling case have put to shame even the dreaded smuggler Haji Mastan,” said Hassan.