Leader of the Opposition V.S. Achuthanandan has expressed surprise how the government could allow IAS officer T.O. Sooraj to continue as the Commissioner of Land Revenue despite adverse comments against him from the Kerala High Court in a land grab case involving the Chief Minister’s former gunman Salim Raj.

In a statement here on Thursday, Mr. Achuthanandan alleged that the government’s silence on the order issued by the court on December 19 showed Chief Minister Oommen Chandy’s involvement in his former gunman’s operations.

The High Court’s Division Bench, in its order, had noted that the manipulative operations behind the land grab were carried out on the strength of certain proceedings of the Commissioner of Land Revenue, he said.

He also alleged that G. Kamalavardhana Rao, who had reported against the Land Revenue Commissioner’s action to the government, had chosen to step down from the position of the Principal Secretary for Revenue only because honest officials could not function under a Chief Minister such as Mr. Chandy.

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