K Surendran had alleged that many people visited Swapna Suresh, the key accused in the gold smuggling case, violating the prison laws.

K Surendran, Kerala BJP President, wearing a shawl and waving to supportersPC/K Surendran FB
news Controversy Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 14:18

In an unusual move, the Kerala Director-General of Police (DGP) Prisons has issued a notice to BJP state president K Surendran for his statements defaming the jail department. On Tuesday, Surendran had alleged that several people met Swapna Suresh, the key accused in the Kerala gold smuggling case, at the behest of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Finance Minister Thomas Isaac. He also alleged that Swapna met them with the knowledge of the Jail Superintendent and without the permission of the Customs. In the notice sent on Wednesday, DGP Prisons Rishiraj Singh warned of legal action if Surendran did not stop propagating the fake news. 

Swapna Suresh is currently lodged at the Attakkulangara Women’s Jail in Thiruvananthapuram. Various agencies — the National Investigating Agency, the Enforcement Directorate and the Customs — are probing different elements of the gold smuggling case. According to the notice issued by the DGP, Surendran’s statements, which were published in many newspapers and channels, are tantamount to defaming the prisons department and are wrong and baseless.

"There is no visual or material evidence for the allegations. The accused, whom you mentioned in your statement, was visited by her mother, children, brother and husband apart from the officials of the various investigating agencies. The visits took place in the presence of Customs officials, too. The meeting mentioned in the news was done on Wednesday with the prior permission of the Customs officials and in their presence. This is clear from the registers and CCTV visuals of the prisons department," Rishiraj Singh clarified in the note. 

It also said that if Suresndran does not withdraw the statement and issue an apology, the prisons department will be forced to move legally against him.

Reacting to the warning issued by the DGP Prisons, Surendran, however, said that he made the statement that many people visited Swapna in violation of the prison laws, “with utmost responsibility”.

An alleged voice clip of Swapna’s phone conservation has been circulating on social media, in which the female voice is allegedly heard saying that the Enforcement Directorate is pressuring her to give a statement against Pinarayi Vijayan in the case. “Now that a voice clip of Swapna, who is in jail, is out justifying the CM, let the Jail DGP probe that first and come against me after that,” Surendran said in a Facebook post. 

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