Kozhikode: The Janajagratha Yatra of CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan got into a controversy with the CPM leadership as well as Mr Kodiyeri himself compelled to clarify on his travel in smuggler Karat Faisal’s BMW mini cooper car at Koduvally on Wednesday. Karat Faisal is a partner of Shahabaz, key accused in the gold smuggling case. IUML state secretary M.C. Mayin Haji on Wednesday demanded a probe into the CPM leader’s hawala connections. He alleged that the incident exposed the CPM nexus with gold smugglers.
Responding to the controversy, Mr Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said on Thursday that the party would conduct an inquiry into the circumstances that led to his using the car in the party rally. “He is not my acquaintance and the party will examine whether the person was involved in any smuggling cases. When a rally is organised, it is not necessary to check who is the owner of the vehicle,” he added.
BJP leader K. Surendran, who triggered the controversy through a Facebook post on Wednesday, demanded an investigation into the alleged links between the smuggling cartel and the CPM leadership. He told reporters here on Thursday that Mr Kodiyeri had close links with Karat Faisal even when he was the home minister. Faisal had participated in many functions held at Mr Kodiyeri’s home, he alleged. The passport, driving licence and other documents of Karat Faisal taken into the custody by police were released after pressure from the top, he said and added that many of those close to the LDF leadership had links with pipe money, drug trafficking and terror modules. He also demanded an NIA investigation into the shadowy past of recent LDF independent Muslim candidates from the region.