Top bureaucrat M Sivasankar IAS has been removed from the post of Secretary to the Kerala Chief Ministerâ€™s office. The decision was taken due to his alleged connection to Swapna, the prime accused gold smuggling case.
However, Sivasankar is likely to retain his post as IT Secretary.
Meanwhile, Mir Mohammad Ali, a 2011-batch Kerala cadre IAS officer has been charger with the additional position of secretary to CM office.
According to reports, it was Sivasankar who appointed Swapna Suresh as operations manager at the Space Park under the Kerala State IT Infrastructure Limited (KSITI), which comes under the IT department.
Swapna Suresh is the prime accused in the gold smuggling racket, which was busted on Sunday after customs officials seized 30 kgs of gold from a diplomatic baggage addresses to the UAE consulate in Thiruvananthapuram.
It was later discovered that former employees of the consulate Swapna Suresh and Sarith Nair were involved in the gold smuggling. Both the accused were employees of the Consulate until six months ago.
While Sarith is in the custody of the customs department, Swapna is reportedly absconding.
After her stint at the Consulate, Swapna was working as a contract official at the IT department. On Monday she was suspended from the department.
Sarith is a former Public Relations Officer at the Consulate. He made use of a fake identity card to collect the baggage with the smuggled gold.
The gold, allegedly worth Rs 15 crore, was smuggled into the state in chartered flights. According to reports, the bag reached the Thiruvananthapuram airport on Friday. Sources from the customs department at the airport says that gold has probably been smuggled in diplomatic baggage several times.
The gold which was cylindrical was hidden inside steel pipes. The baggage which also consisted of some door locks, air compressors and iron rods was addressed to an officer at the Consulate. The sender's address bore the name of the officer's wife.