The Kozhikode Vigilance Inquiry Commissioner and Special Judge on Friday decided to begin the trial in the B.Ed College bribery case on February 14.

As per the case, three Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leaders had demanded a bribe from the Metropolitan of Malankara Jacobite Syrian Church, Yuhanan Mar Philixinos, for sanctioning a B.Ed college at Meenangadi in Wayanad district.

Last week, Special Judge V. Jayaram had issued orders for starting trial from Friday after the High Court of Kerala had rejected the plea moved by the accused who sought to withdraw the charge-sheet.

The three accused IUML leaders were former legislator P.P.V. Moosa, N. Mammootty, former chairman of State Textile Federation, and P.C. Ahamed, former party secretary of Wayanad district. However two of them — Mammootty and Ahamed — were dead, and their names had been removed from list of accused. Now, only Mr. Moosa would face the trial.

The court had in February 2006 framed charges against the IUML leaders after finding them prima facie guilty in the case. This was on the basis of the deposition of the Metropolitan.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, former Minister T. M. Jacob, and Government Chief Whip P.C. George were among the eight witnesses who had deposed before the court earlier. The Metropolitan, who was the sixth witness in the case, had deposed before the court thrice.

The case had its origin in a petition filed by social activist Joemon Puthanpurakkal before the Vigilance Court under Section 202 of the Code of Criminal Procedure on January 20, 2004.

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