Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan informed the Assembly on Tuesday that the government had asked a special investigation team headed by ADGP (Crime) and the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) to go into the various aspects of the ice cream parlour case, particularly the conspiracy and corruption angles.
Responding to CPI(M) member K. K. Shyalaja’s call attention motion seeking stern action against those who had allegedly tried to scuttle the ice cream parlour case, the Home Minister said that the Kozhikode Town Police had a case under Sections 120 (1), 109, 468, 465, 214, 191 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code in connection with the revelations made by K. A. Rauf, a close relative of former Industries Minister P. K. Kunhalikkutty and the media over the last few days.
The case was registered on the basis of a preliminary investigation report submitted to the Commissioner of Police, Kozhikode, by the Assistant Commissioner (Special Branch), who had been directed to go into the revelations made by Mr. Rauf and the subsequent media revelations, he said.
Listing the preliminary information on the basis of which the case had been registered, the Home Minister said these included payment of huge sums of money to the main witnesses in the case to secure withdrawal of allegations against Mr. Kunhalikkutty, conspiracy to scuttle the case, securing of a medical report from a local hospital to the effect that the main witness was of unsound mind, preparation of bogus affidavits, alteration of Mr. Kunhalikkutty’s tour diary to protect him and attempts to influence two judges of the Kerala High Court.
Mr. Balakrishnan said the government stand was that this could not be seen as merely a sex scandal as it had other dimensions such as misuse of power for exploitation of women, attempts to influence High Court judges, using the Additional Director General of Prosecutions under the shade of political power and a bid to undermine the very law enforcement system of the State.
While the team under the ADGP (Crime) would look into the criminal angles, the VACB would investigate the corruption angle. The government would inform the Kerala High Court about the allegations relating to the two former judges.
The TV channel which had exposed the case would be asked to submit evidence and, if they do so, these would be examined by the VACB, the Home Minister said.
Earlier, Ms. Shylaja said that the revelations of the last few days showed that the ice cream parlour case deserved to be subjected to a serious re-investigation. That the main witness in the case had altered the evidence she had given before a magistrate under Section 164 of the IPC should not be a bar for such investigation as there was the precedent of the Best Bakery Case where further investigations had brought out the truth.
The Kerala State Women’s Commission was in possession of the main witness Rejina’s statement which gave a graphic account of the role played by Mr. Kunhalikkutty. The former Minister’s own admission that, as Minister, he had gone out of the way to help Mr. Rauf also demanded an investigation as it amounted to breach of the oath he had taken when assuming charge as Minister, the CPI(M) member said.