Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Friday suspended for two months the controversial order directing the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau to register an FIR against Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and minister Aryaden Muhammed in the solar scam.
Saritha Nair, key accused in the solar scandal, told the Justice G. Sivarajan Commission probing the issue on Friday that Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had asked her to form a company with his son Chandy Oommen as a partner.
Claiming that she only had business relationship with Chandy Oommen, Ms Saritha denied a report that she had illicit relationship with the chief minister’s son.
Ms Saritha, however, said Chandy Oommen had an affair with another woman accused in the solar case and she had the evidence of the two traveling together to Dubai.
But, she declined to reveal the name of the woman and said that former home minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishan had collected the evidence of the relationship and used the same as a bargaining chip with the chief minister.
On the third day of her deposition before the commission, Ms Saritha said during her meeting with the chief minister at Kadaplamattom, Oommen Chandy told her about the need for registering a firm as a cooperative society with his son and relatives as partners.
Chandy Oommen, on his part, promised that materials needed for the solar project could be imported from a US-based company, Star Flakes Inc, in which he had partnership.
Ms Saritha also refuted the chief minister’s claim that the government had not provided any help to Team Solar Company of Saritha and co-accused Biju Radhakrishnan.
According to her, Team Solar was operating as a franchise of Hyderabad-based Surana Ventures, which had bagged several government projects in the state.
It got government tenders at low rates with the help of electricity minister Aryadan Mohammad. She said that a delay in payment of Rs 35-lakh from ANERT was resolved with the help of the chief minister. She said that the commission could call for the relevant files from ANERT.
Meanwhile, in a reprieve for Oommen Chandy, Kerala High Court stayed the lodging of an FIR against him and another minister in the solar scam case with strictures against the vigilance judge who immediately offered to quit.
Apparently stung by the strong observations against him by the High Court, the Vigilance Judge S.S. Vassan, sought permission for voluntary retirement, about 16 months before his tenure ends. He is due to retire in May, 2017....