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`No decision yet on CBI probe'

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V.S. Achuthanandan
V.S. Achuthanandan

Special Correspondent

`Graft charges will not be ignored'

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said the Left Democratic Front Government has not taken a decision against referring the SNC Lavalin case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Answering a question at a press conference after the weekly Cabinet meeting here on Wednesday, Mr. Achuthanandan said the Government would not ignore any corruption charges brought to its notice. "It is not the Government's opinion," he said, when journalists asked him about an affidavit filed in the High Court by the Government saying that it did not consider it necessary to have the case investigated by the CBI. When journalists pressed him further, he said he could respond to more questions on the subject only after studying what had happened in the court. Mr. Achuthanandan said the State Vigilance, after its investigation, had filed the charge sheet in the case in the Thrissur Vigilance Court. It was subsequent to this that the previous United Democratic Front Government had taken the decision to hand over the case to the CBI, he noted.

`Bid to sabotage probe'

Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president Ramesh Chennithala has alleged that the contradiction in Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan's statement and Government's action in the SNC Lavalin case clearly indicates that an extra-constitutional power is out to sabotage the Central Bureau of Investigation's probe into the scandal that rocked the State.

In a statement here on Wednesday, he said the Chief Minister had clearly ruled out any question of dropping the probes into the charges, but the Government had filed an affidavit before the Court that it did not want a CBI inquiry. The Advocate General (AG), on behalf of the Government, filed the affidavit, but the Chief Minister said he would examine the matter. Mr. Chennithala wanted to know whether the AG would be ousted for having filed an affidavit that went against the Chief Minister's stand. He wanted the Chief Minister to disclose who had directed the AG to file the affidavit before the High Court.

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