M Sivasankar, former Principal Secretary of Kerala CMO. (file photo)
M Sivasankar, former Principal Secretary of Kerala CMO. (file photo)

Kerala Gold smuggling: Sivasankar's bail petition dismissed in money laundering case

ANI | Updated: Dec 30, 2020 22:30 IST

Kochi (Kerala) [India], December 30 (ANI): Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Court (Economic Offences) dismissed the bail petition of former principal secretary of the Kerala CMO M Sivasankar in the money laundering case in connection with the Kerala gold smuggling case.
The court dismissed the bail petition in the case registered by the Customs department.
Former principal secretary of the Kerala Chief Minister's Office, M Sivasankar travelled to UAE seven times along with Kerala gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh, Customs department had said on Tuesday in a submission to the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Court (Economic Offences).
"'All the seven times, they stayed in five-star hotels in UAE and Sivasankar had personally borne the accommodation expenses. These trips were made with hidden intentions and the same are being probed by the agency. A senior IAS officer making that many trips to the same country is highly unusual," the Customs had said.
It had added that gold smuggling activities carried out by the accused with Sivasankar's help have affected the friendly relationship between India and UAE, a country that gives employment to a large number of Indians.
"The functioning of UAE Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram has come to a standstill following the incident, which is not congenial to the maintenance of the good relations with the Gulf country," it had stated further.

The case, which is currently being probed by the ED, the National Investigation Agency, and the Customs Department, pertains to the smuggling of gold in the state through diplomatic channels.
The matter had come to light after 30 kilograms of gold worth Rs 14.82 crores, smuggled through diplomatic cargo, was busted by the Customs in Thiruvananthapuram on July 5. (ANI)