Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], April 10 (ANI): Union Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan on Saturday demanded action by the Kerala government against Higher Education Minister KT Jaleel in light of Lokayukta verdict that he was guilty of nepotism, and questioned Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's silence on the issue.
He alleged that Chief Minister's personal relationship with KT Jaleel had protected him and challenged Vijayan to come clean on that relationship.
Muraleedharan said, "I demand State government to take action against KT Jaleel and not to give him any special privilege based on his connection with Chief Minister."
"Jaleel is privy to information about some act in which Chief Minister is involved. If that is the reason, Kerala CM has to come clean on reasons why he is unable to take any action against Jaleel," he further said.
"The nepotism in the appointment of Jaleel's relative in a government post clearly brings out large scale corruption in the government of Kerala", he said adding that in spite of all this the Kerala law minister tried to justify Jaleel's side.
"This shows the double standard that Chief Minister has been practising. What is the special privilege that Jaleel enjoys which has not been given to the senior ministers of CPI(M)?" he asked.
Muraleedharan listed out alleged instances of Pinarayi Vijayan coming to Jaleel's rescue citing, "The Chief Minister has been very eager to justify Jaleel when Enforcement Directorate questioned him for almost 8 hours. He did not care to ask the minister what was the close relationship that he had with the consulate of a foreign country in Thiruvanathapuram."
"When issues related to abnormalities in the Adalat he conducted personally at Technical University came to light, When issues related to the land acquisition of Malayalam University and when Christian community has complained that minority benefits are not reaching them, the chief Minister justified Jaleel," he added.
The Lokayukta on Friday found KT Jaleel, guilty of 'allegations of abuse of power, favouritism, nepotism and violation of Oath of Office' and ordered that he should 'not continue to hold the post held by him as a Member of the Council of Ministers.'
The findings by the Lokayukta Justice Cyriac Joseph and Upa Lokayukta Harul Ul Rashid are based on a complaint against the Minister, which accused him of misusing his office to appoint his relative KT Adeeb as general manager in the Kerala State Minorities Development Finance Corporation Limited. (ANI)