Pinarayi accorded reception at Gandhi Park; says party was targeted unfairly
The tendency to use the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) as a tool for political vendetta should be put to stop, Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI (M)] general secretary Prakash Karat has said.
He was speaking at a public reception accorded to CPI (M) State Secretary Pinarayi Vijayan at Gandhi Park here on Wednesday, after a CBI special court cleared Mr. Vijayan of all charges levelled against him in the SNC-Lavalin case. The Congress had used the CBI to strike political bargains with many parties. But they were mistaken if they had expected that the CPI(M) would surrender to them if the party’s topmost leader in Kerala was targeted, Mr. Karat said. “The fact that the court did not proceed to the trial and instead, terminated the case itself shows that totally baseless charges were levelled against Mr. Vijayan. This itself raises a question mark on the CBI’s investigation and the motive of the UDF government which started the witch-hunt against him,” he said.
He said the party and the Polit Bureau stood by Mr. Vijayan as it had not an iota of doubt that these were politically motivated allegations. Mr. Vijayan, in his reply, said that the celebrations across the State following the verdict show the people’s anger at the unfair targeting of the party through him. The party’s stand that it would counter the charges politically and legally was a source of strength.
On the electricity scene in Kerala when the LDF came to power in 1996, he said that the State was facing 4.5 hours power cut daily. “There was 95 per cent power cut in all industries. We started off with the promise that we will give importance to the power sector. It was a collective effort involving the entire ministry and KSEB officials. Everyone celebrated when stopped load-shedding,” he said.