THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Former minister E.P. Jayarajan kept off the crucial central committee meeting in Delhi on Tuesday which was slated to discuss charges of nepotism against him and Kannur MP P.K. Sreemathy. Mr Jayarajan was to explain allegations of nepotism connected with appointment of Sreemathy’s son and his close relative P.K. Sudheer as Kerala State Industrial Enterprises (KSIE) managing director. The politburo found lapses on the part of the two leaders the other day and recommended disciplinary action after hearing their version.
A section of Kerala leaders had backed Mr Jayarajan saying that he had not committed any lapse which warranted stringent disciplinary action. Mr Jayarajan was forced to quit Pinarayi Vijayan Cabinet in October 2016 after the state Secretariat found lapses on his part in appointing Sudheer. While the state secretariat left the decision on disciplinary action against them to the central leadership, the process got delayed because of CPM state leadership’s failure to submit a detailed report to the central leadership in time. The former minister has asked the central leadership to defer disciplinary action till Vigilance and Anti Corruption Bureau (VACB) completed its probe.
The High Court had recently stayed the probe following a petition filed by Jayarajan in which he had contended that the government was the appointing authority and the order had not been executed. With most state leaders not in favour of action, the central committee members might get away with minor punishment like censure or warning. Many believe that the lapses on the part of Jayarajan and Sreemathy should have been dealt with strictly as per the party norms. The act of nepotism, according to CPM plenum document, is also one of the forms of corruption.