In connection with the gold smuggling case, the Ernakulam Economic Offences Court has rejected the bail plea submitted by former Principal Secretary to Chief Minister M Sivasankar. The Court observed that prima facie it is evident that Sivasankar was involved in the smuggling.
According to reports, the co-accused has given a strong statement against Sivasankar. It is clear from the statements that high rank individuals were involved in the crime. The Court also said that Sivasankar's contention that only the statements of other accused were against him would not stand any more. The court also ruled that Sivasankar was not cooperating with the investigation.
On Tuesday, the Customs informed the court that Sivasankar has travelled seven times to UAE with Swapna Suresh. While opposing the bail petition filed by Sivasankar, the Customs official told the Ernakulam Economic Offences Court that the duo stayed in five-star hotels all the seven times when they travelled to the United Arab Emirates and Sivasankar had paid the accommodation expenses. They even stressed that these trips had hidden intentions and a senior IAS officer making these many trips to the same country is highly unusual.
The Customs counsel said that the gold smuggling activities conducted by Swapna Suresh with the support of Sivasankar have affected the relationship between India and UAE.
Meanwhile, Sivasankar had claimed that he was ill since 2015 and there is no evidence against him in the case registered by the Customs. However, the Court then adjourned the verdict on Sivasankar’s bail petition for today.
Earlier, the Enforcement Directorate had attached Sivasankar’s assets worth Rs 1 crore in connection with the money laundering case.