Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said here on Wednesday that the Opposition Left Democratic Front (LDF) was stalling Assembly proceedings because it could not establish its allegations against him through proper discussion.
Talking to the media after a meeting of the Cabinet, the Chief Minister said the Opposition had stalled the proceedings for a record 34 days out of 129 days of sittings since the constitution of the present Assembly. While walkouts could be genuine means of democratic protests, stalling of discussions was the means of cowards.
Mr. Chandy said Government Chief Whip P.C. George had clarified that he had not stated that the solar panel scam involved a plan to swindle Rs.1,000 crore out of investors. The total amount involved in 15 cases registered against Biju Radhakrishan and Saritha S. Nair came to only Rs.5 crore.
He said all complaints relating to the duo and his office staff would be inquired properly. Making phone calls was not an offence. What needed to be proved are criminal deeds. His personal staff had not been suspended from service because of this. They had, however, been removed from their present charge, pending inquiry.
Referring to the disparaging remarks made about him by the Opposition, the Chief Minister said this was not something new. He had been portrayed as one doing the job of the panchayat secretary and the village officer for his mass contract programme. However, there were issues that the panchayat secretary or the village officer could not do. The 46 government orders issued following the programme were an evidence of that. Some issues that came to his notice during the programme needed to be decided at the Cabinet level. “The people of Kerala know me. They have returned me to the Assembly the tenth time.”
The Chief Minister said he was not making the ruse that similar scams had taken place during the LDF rule. He was only reminding the Opposition that similar things had happened during their rule. The then Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan now says that the LDF government had erred in allowing transfer of registry for land brought for the Aranmula airport.
He said the solar power unit in his office was set up by Megabyte Technology under the Soorya Keralam project of C-DIT. Engineer and social activist R.V.G. Menon had recommended the company.
He said the Cabinet had discussed improving security arrangements at the Secretariat and the Home Secretary and the Chief Secretary had been asked to work out the details. However, he did not propose to keep people away from his office.