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Gold Smuggling Case: M Sivasankar IAS, Former Secretary To Kerala CMO, Moves HC Seeking Pre-Arrest Bail

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
14 Oct 2020 11:40 AM GMT
Gold Smuggling Case: M Sivasankar IAS, Former Secretary To Kerala CMO, Moves HC Seeking Pre-Arrest Bail
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M Sivasankar IAS, former Principal Secretary to the office of Kerala Chief Minister, has filed an application seeking anticipatory bail in the Kerala High Court apprehending arrest by the Enforcement Directorate in the gold smuggling case.He was removed as the Principal Secretary of CMO after the allegations of his nexus with Swapna Suresh, the prime accused in the case relating to smuggling...

M Sivasankar IAS, former Principal Secretary to the office of Kerala Chief Minister, has filed an application seeking anticipatory bail in the Kerala High Court apprehending arrest by the Enforcement Directorate in the gold smuggling case.

He was removed as the Principal Secretary of CMO after the allegations of his nexus with Swapna Suresh, the prime accused in the case relating to smuggling of gold through diplomatic channel, surfaced in last July.

Sivasankar said in his application that he has been questioned by central agencies such as the National Investigation Agency and the Customs for several days in relation to the case. Despite nearly 90 hours of questioning over 100 days of investigation, none of the agencies could find anything incriminating against him, he claimed.

Now, the Enforcement Directorate has filed a report in relation to the case before the Special Court for PMLA(Prevention of Money Laundering Act) case, with allegations against him, said the application.

"When the petitioner perused the charge sheet, he could see lot of confusing findings in the final report pointing fingers towards the petitioner. Therefore the petitioner strongly apprehends that to satisfy certain vested interests, there is every possibility that the investigating agency is compelled to arrest the petitioner though he is not arrayed as accused in the final report", said the bail application filed through Advocate S Rajeev.

Sivasankar conceded that he had acquaintance with Swapna Suresh as she was working as Secretary of the UAE Consulate at the State Capital during 2018-19 and that he used to have interactions with her in official capacity.

He said that until the news report about the gold smuggling case appeared, he had no knowledge that Swapna was involved in smuggling gold misusing diplomatic channel.

Though the ED has said that the gold smuggling activities started in November 2019, it has annexed the whatsapp conversations between Sivasankar and Swapna prior to that period to portray a false impression that he has got some connections with the smuggling activities, says the application.

He added that there was a baseless "media trial" going on against him and that the agency might act under media pressure.

"Petitioner strongly apprehends that the investigating agency is under tremendous pressure due to media trial. Petitioner further fears that the media's false propaganda and frivolous news items and constant demand for arrest of the petitioner for creating news value has created a situation where the investigating agencies are forced to save their skin from allegations by arresting the petitioner, thereby playing to the fourth estate and avoiding criticism", the application stated.




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