The Kerala High Court on Friday granted an interim stay on a vigilance court order directing for an FIR to be registered against Oommen Chandy and Power Minister Aryadan Muhammed. The interim stay has been granted for two months.
The High Court has also criticised the Vigilance Court judge for the order. The High Court observed that the Vigilance Court Judge seemed unaware of his position as he had called himself just a 'postman' in the order.
Reacting to the order, Congress leader KC Joseph said the HC should recommend action against the vigilance court judge. "Now let people decide if there was a conspiracy between the judge and others to bring down this government," Joseph said.
The High Court's order comes as huge relief for Oommen Chandy as not just the opposition, but even leaders of other Congress factions were demanding his resignation, directly or indirectly.
Earlier in the day CM Oommen Chandy and Power minister Aryadan Muhammed filed a petition in the Kerala High Court seeking to quash the Thrissur Vigilance Court order which had directed the police to lodge an FIR against him in connection to the Kerala Solar Scam.
Chandy in his affidavit had told the court that the Thrissur Vigilance Court had unnecessarily rushed into giving an order, that too based on a complaint which only had media reports as evidence.
Oommen Chandy's lawyer also asked the court what was the need for the court to issue such a direction in a case that did not even fall under its jurisdiction.
On Thursday, the Thrissur Vigilance Court asked the police to treat a petition filed by social activist PD Joseph in the Solar Scam case, as an FIR against Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Power Minister Aryadan Muhammed.
PD Joseph had stated that the revelations made by co-accused Saritha Nair that she paid Rs 1.9 crore to the CM’s office before the Solar Commission on Wednesday.
However, on the same day (Thursday) hearing a petition filed by state Excise Minister K Babu, the High Court directed the Vigilance Court cannot seek an FIR against Babu.
To make things worse for the government, a RSP MLA has also voiced their concern over the government’s credibility and offered his resignation on Thursday. RSP is an ally of the Congress in the UDF government.
The state witnessed violent protests on Friday and Thursday in the state capital and elsewhere where the police had to resort to lathicharge and tear gas in order to control the crowd of Left supporters.