Kochi: Swapna Suresh, an accused in the diplomatic gold smuggling case, has come out with more serious allegations against Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. In her latest revelations before the media, Swapna claimed that the chief minister’s office had intervened to grant bail to a citizen of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) who had been nabbed at Kochi Airport with ‘Thuraya’, a banned satellite phone which could be used for terrorism activities, on August 4, 2017.
“More details regarding the case will be released in the coming days,” Swapna told reporters in Kochi. She also produced copies of the first information report (FIR) filed by the police in this regard.
It all started when the UAE consulate at Thiruvananthapuram, where Swapna worked at that time, received a call which said that a UAE citizen was arrested at Kochi Airport and kept in the custody of the Nedumbassery Police. “The Consul General asked me to contact the chief minister. According to the Consul General, Pinarayi had told him that he should be informed whenever such incidents occurred. So, I called Sivasankar Sir (Pinarayi’s then-Principal Secretary) and conveyed the matter to him,” said Swapna.
“Sivasankar replied that he would speak to the chief minister and get back to me. Within 10 minutes, I received Sivasankar’s call. He said he had told Pinarayi about the development and everything had been arranged,” she added.
“The chief minister’s office intervened and the UAE man secured bail the next day. He flew from India on August 7. There has been no further probe into such a serious incident,” said Swapna.
She also pointed out that the chief minister had recommended a probe by the NIA (National Investigation Agency) into the gold smuggling case but had let off a UAE citizen intercepted with a satellite phone used by terror outfits without any investigation.
“The UAE citizen had arrived at Kozhikode Airport from Abu Dhabi on July 30. He, in fact, was born in Egypt and not a real UAE native. Later, he was apprehended by CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) at Nedumbassery while trying to escape in an Oman Airways flight on August 4. There was no inquiry into what all this man had done in Kerala during the intervening period,” said Swapna.
“Later, I prepared an affidavit based on the instructions of the PRO and got it signed by the Consul General. I then sent it on WhatsApp. The man, arrested on August 4, was kept in custody till August 6 and released that day based on this affidavit. He then flew back to his country on August 7. The chief minister and Sivasankar allowed a terrorist to escape from India,” alleged Swapna.
She also resumed her attack on former minister K T Jaleel. “When I had mentioned about protocol violations, Jaleel had asked whether it was so serious a crime as to attract capital punishment. It is only natural that he feels that protocol violations are not grave when the chief minister of the state himself helps a terrorist to escape from the country,” said Swapna.
“Why did Pinarayi help the UAE consulate to get a terrorist freed? It is clear that he engaged in this illegal action to get his daughter’s business deals done in the UAE,” alleged Swapna.