‘Probe can continue into payment for Kerala LS seat’

Thiruvananthapuram : The Lok Ayukt here Monday ruled that the probe into the ‘payment for Lok Sabha seat’ complaint against the CPI can go forward.

A few months ago a Thiruvananthapuram district resident Shamnadh made a complaint that the CPI had literally ‘sold’ the party ticket for the Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha seat to a medical professional Bennet Abraham for Rs 1.80 crore.

Support TwoCircles

The Lok Ayukta had ordered a probe by IG of Police Suresh Raj Purohit. It said Monday that if need be the probe team headed by Purohit can question CPI state secretary Paniyan Ravindran.

Wrangling in the CPI began the moment Abraham’s name was announced for the Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha seat for the 2014 polls.

Soon after the announcement of Abraham’s candidature word went around that it was a ‘payment seat’.

Abraham finished third in the election, following which three party leaders including the legislative party leader and former minister C. Divakaran were demoted to a lower committee.

CPI district secretary V. Sasi not only decided to quit the party but also came out with startling revelations that it was because of the rigid stand taken by Ravindran that Abraham got the CPI ticket.

“Abraham came with Rs 1.87 crore and if Ravindran says he is not aware of this, then it’s nothing but a lie,” Sasi had said then.

P. Ramachandran Nair, the third party leader to be demoted had said that it was unfair to target just the three of them for the selection of Abraham.