Oomen Chandy moves Kerala HC seeking to quash solar panel scam inquiry report

Congress leader Oommen Chandy has moved the Kerala High Court, seeking to quash the solar panel scam inquiry commission report, alleging that it travelled beyond the scope of the terms of reference.

In his petition filed on Saturday, the former chief minister alleged that the judicial commission’s findings were based on a letter written by one of the accused in the solar panel scam, Saritha S Nair.

The petition is likely to be considered tomorrow.

Chandy said he was one among others whose name was “illegally” included in the letter written by Saritha in relation to her alleged sexual exploitation and harassment.

Such a case can only be enquired into and probed under provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure and not by a Commission of Inquiry, he said and sought to quash the report.

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He alleged that the commission never issued him notice under Section 8(b) as mandated in the Commission of Enquiry Act, 1952, when it decided to entertain Saritha’s letter.

Chandy contented that with the placing of the report before the Assembly, the letter has become a part of the official records and the reputation of the petitioners, along with others, was severely affected.

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Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had tabled the Justice G Sivarajan commission report on the solar scam last month in the state assembly.

The report found that Chandy and his staff provided all help to accused Saritha and her company to dupe people.

Apart from the bribery charges against various opposition leaders, the report also found that they got “sexual favours” from the accused.

“The Commission has pointed out that this (sexual pleasure) comes under the ambit of illegal gratification pointed out in the Prevention of Corruption Act,” Vijayan said in the Assembly.

Justice Sivarajan submitted his report on September 26, four years after the previous Congress-led UDF government constituted the commission, when the charges surfaced about duping of several persons of crores of rupees by Saritha and her accomplice Biju Radhakrishnan by offering solar panel solutions.

The Commission, set up in October, 2013, had held 353 sittings and examined 214 witnesses and 972 documents.

Source: PTI