After the suspension of senior IAS officer M Sivasankar for alleged links with accused persons in the controversial gold smuggling case, the spotlight now seems to be on Kerala Assembly Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan. The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) MLA, M Ummer, on Thursday served a notice to the Kerala Assembly Secretary seeking removal of the Speaker alleging that the latter has links with the accused in the gold smuggling case.
The IUML legislator, who is part of the Opposition Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF), in his notice alleged that the Speaker had inaugurated a shop belonging to one of the accused in the case.
"The conduct of the Speaker, who has alleged links with the accused in the gold smuggling matter, which is being probed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), was not in accordance with the decorum of the House," the notice said.
It sought to remove Sreeramakrishnan from the post of Speaker as "he failed to keep the dignity of the post."
The Speaker was under criticism from the Opposition for inaugurating the shop of one of the accused in the gold smuggling case, Sandeep Nair, months ago.
The notice has been served to the Assembly Secretary under Article 179 (C) of the Indian Constitution which deals with the removal of the Speaker.
Sandeep Nair, is the fourth accused in the case pertaining to smuggling 30 kg of gold in a supposed consular bag. He has been arrested and the case is presently being probed by the NIA, which is looking into allegations that the smuggled gold might be used for funding terrorism in the country.
The Left Democratic Front (LDF) government of the state is already in a soup with opposition parties alleging that the accused in the case have close connections with many in the government.
Senior IAS officer M Sivasankar was suspended for flouting All India Civil Service rules by having alleged connections with the accused. He was earlier removed from the post of Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister and from the post of IT Secretary.
Another person, Arun Balachandran, a staff under IT Department was also removed from the post of IT Fellow to CM in connection with the case. It is following these, that the demand to remove Speaker Sreeramakrishnan from the post has become stronger.
(With PTI inputs)
Watch 30 kg gold smuggled through Trivandrum airport: