Justice PS Antony Commission was asked to probe the sexually explicit audio conversation allegedly between former Transport Minister AK Saseendran and a woman.

 Kerala CM office bars media entry at Secretariat sleaze tape probe report submitted
news Media Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - 16:18

The Kerala Chief Minister’s Office barred the media from entering the Secretariat at Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday as the Justice PS Antony Commission report probing the alleged ‘sex tape’ of NCP leader AK Saseendran was submitted on Tuesday.

Based on orders from the CM’s office, police officials did not entertain media presence near the Secretariat premises when Justice PS Antony arrived to submit the report.

In March 2017, a commission headed by retired judge PS Antony was constituted to inquire into the broadcast of a sexually explicit conversation allegedly between then Transport Minister AK Saseendran and a woman on Malayalam channel – Mangalam TV.

Transport Minister AK Saseendran had resigned on 26 March 2017 just hours after the audio conversation was aired.

The judicial inquiry is crucial to the political future of NCP leader AK Saseendran. The commission report has examined in detail if the telephonic conversation was recorded earlier and if the audio clip was edited. It also investigated under what circumstances the conversation took place and whether there was any conspiracy behind the decision to telecast the conversation.

Speaking to reporters after submitting the report, Justice PS Antony said that the commission has recommended amending the Press Council of India to the Media Council of India. This he said, would help bring in discipline among the visual media.

“Media should be guided by public interest and not commercial interest. I am not advocating media restrictions as such. Print media is guided and monitored by Press Council. Unlike print media, visual media has no such guiding institution,” said the retired judge.

If the report exonerates Saseendran, it may smoothen his return to the cabinet.  This after Saseendran’s NCP colleague and his replacement as Transport Minister Thomas Chandy was forced to last week following allegations of land encroachment.

All photographs by Sreekesh Raveendran Nair

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