Solar-scam accused meets CBI officials in Delhi, IPS officer fixes meeting

Oommen Chandy

Thiruvananthapuram: A special messenger from here delivered to the CBI headquarters in Delhi the status report about the alleged harassment of a key accused in the solar panel scam. The Crime Branch report on the probe findings too was delivered simultaneously.

But close on the heels of the delivery, the complainant woman, too, reached the CBI headquarters, just two days later. It is believed that a Kerala-cadre IPS officer, Neeraj Gupta, facilitated the woman’s meeting with senior CBI officials at the behest of the Chief Minister’s Office.

Gupta was appointed as the Office-on-Special Duty in New Delhi six months ago.

The despatch of Crime Branch documents to Delhi was kept a top-secret, and it is not yet known how the complainant received information about the move.

The delivery, ensuring confidentiality, was as directed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Home) of the Union government.

On March 20, this official had asked for the report and instructed that it be delivered by an officer in the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police or above.

The Director-General of Police, however, on March 21 dispatched the reports through a confidant, a Superintendent of Police attached to the Crime Branch in central Kerala. Immediately after the delivery, the senior police officer in Delhi facilitated the meeting between senior CBI officials and the complainant.

The Crime Branch had reported that there was no evidence against former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy to substantiate the complainant’s charges.

Six cases, registered on the basis of her statements in 2018 and 2019, were handed over to the CBI. The central agency is yet to take up the case but asked the state to submit the pro-forma report, status report, and their English translated versions to the Ministry of Personnel, which scrutinizes recommendations from the states for CBI intervention.

The latest move indicates the state government is keen on making the CBI take up the case at the earliest.

The police superintendent, who delivered the reports, returned to Kerala on March 25.

Earlier, separate Kerala police teams had probed the allegations. They did not take further action since no evidence was found. Later, six teams of the Crime Branch, too, probed the case. Though a senior Crime Branch officer tried to force the teams to take further action, none relented.

Following this, the complainant approached the Chief Minister, requesting to hand over the case to the CBI.

Police turns blind eye towards wanted suspect

Separate police teams have inspected the complainant’s car at Nemom and other places, when she travelled to Nedumbassery from Thiruvananthapuram on March 23.

She is a wanted suspect in a few financial fraud cases, and the police had earlier informed the court that she could not be found.

The police teams, which inspected her car en route to the airport, allowed her to proceed. Police at the airport, too, looked the other way when she arrived to board a flight to Delhi.

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