Disproportionate asset case: Vigilance raids at Muslim League MLA KM Shaji’s Kozhikode, Kannur homes

A preliminary Vigilance report stated that IUML MLA KM Shaji has assets and savings amounting to 166% higher than his known source of income
KM Shaji
KM Shaji

The Vigilance & Anti Corruption Bureau (VACB) is conducting raids at Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) MLA KM Shaji’s homes at Kannur and Kozhikode. A special unit of the Vigilance Bureau began to raid early on Monday morning.

According to reports, the raids began after the Kozhikode unit of VACB had earlier registered a case against the MLA for accumulating assets disproportionate to the known sources of income. The VACB informed the Vigilance Court that Shaji’s wealth has increased by 166% over his income.

Reportedly, the preliminary Vigilance report states that Shaji has assets and savings amounting to 166% higher than his known source of income. The highest increase in assets was marked between 2011-2020. Shaji's income was Rs 83,57,452 during this period while his total assets mark Rs 2,03,80,557.

Earlier, activist MR Hareesh had informed the court that Shaji has amassed disproportionate assets. He approached the court when probe officials didn't file a case against Shaji even after having enough evidence on illegal assets. However, following Hareesh's petition, the Vigilance has submitted a report in the court confirming that initial evidence suggests that Shaji gathered illegal assets.

MR Hareesh had filed a petition citing that there is a wide disparity in the details of assets submitted by Shaji in his poll affidavit over the total expense in the construction of his luxurious house. Based on the plea, the department has also found that Shaji's house is worth Rs 1.62 crore.

Ahead of the recently concluded Kerala Assembly elections, the presiding officer has accepted KM Shaji's nomination paper by rejecting the complaint filed by LDF candidate KV Sumesh. The complaint pointed out the High Court verdict that disqualified KM Shaji for six years. Earlier, the Supreme Court had stayed the High Court order which disqualified Shaji. The IUML MLA is facing a probe after Kannur Block Panchayat president Padmanabhan lodged a complaint against Shaji, saying that he accepted Rs 25 lakh for permitting plus two in a school in the Azheekode constituency.

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