In a major development, reportedly, the Customs officials have sought legal advice from the Assistant Solicitor General (ACG) to question Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan in connection with the dollar smuggling case. According to reports, Customs Commissioner Sumit Kumar has sought legal advice from Assistant Solicitor General P Vijayakumar.
The Customs department has inquired the legal procedures to follow before questioning the Speaker. In response, the ACG Office informed the Customs that there was an earlier order from the Supreme Court on the same matter and it would reply after examining it.
Meanwhile, the Speaker’s assistant private secretary K Ayyappan has appeared before Customs officials at 9 am today for questioning. The interrogation is regarding the Speaker’s travel details, visitors’ details, and information in the tour diary. The notice asking him to appear before Customs was delivered at his residential address following Sreeramakrishna’s letter to the Customs stating that Speaker’s consent is necessary to quiz any of his personal staff.
Earlier, the probe agency had issued summons asking Ayyappan to appear in connection with the alleged smuggling of US $1,90,000 to Muscat. The smuggling news broke out during ongoing investigation into the Kerala gold smuggling case. The Speaker has come under severe criticism for inaugurating the shop of Sandeep Nair, one of the accused in the gold smuggling case.
Last week, there were speculations that the Customs would soon serve a notice to the Speaker in connection with the dollar smuggling case.
Besides, four more accused apart from Sandeep Nair are likely to be made approvers in connection with the Kerala gold smuggling case.