Kerala gold smuggling case: HC rejects former Principal Secretary M Sivasankar’s bail, ED takes him into custody

South India

ED has taken the former principal secretary to Koch for interrogation after taking him into custody from an ayurvedic centre in state capital

In a major setback, the Kerala High Court on Wednesday rejected the anticipatory bail of former IT Principal Secretary and chief minister's secretary M Sivasankar. Immediately after the rejection of the bail plea of the senior IAS officer by the high court, the Enforcement Directorate sleuths took him into custody from an ayurvedic centere in Thiruvananthapuram where he was undergoing treatment for his back pain.

Sivasankar silently went along with the ED officials to Kochi where he will be interrogated in connection with the gold smuggling case. Before taking him to their vehicle, the ED officials reportedly asked him whether he would come to Kochi in his vehicle or along with them. Sivasankar agreed to accompany the officials.

The court rejected the bail plea of the former principal secretary in the cases registered by the ED and the Custorms Department. The Central agencies informed the court that it was Sivasankar himsself might have planned the gold smuggling case. They also said that the officer was not cooperating with the investigation agencies in the case and argued that his health problems were fake and means to evade interrogation.

The high court rejected all the arguments of the official.

The central agencies also argued that Sivasankar was a powerful bureaucrat and might influence the witnesses in the case. Besised this, he may also destory evidences in connection with the cases.

The Customs informed the court that he allegedly recieved kickbacks and financial crimes are actions against the society.

Sivasankar had obtained court order not to arrest him till Wednesday after the Customs had reached his house to take him into custody a week ago. He complained chest pain and got admitted to a hospital in Thiruvananthapuram. A day later, he was shifted to Thiruvananthapuram Medical College after he complained back pain.

However, during this time, he managed to obtain an order from the high court against arrest.

The Customs had then said that his back pain issue was fake and a way to evade custodial interrogation and arrest.

Image credit: News Indian Express

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