Arya alleged that Veena was being attacked for the sole reason that she was Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan’s daughter and that she had no doubt the allegations against her would prove to be like “lines drawn on water.”

Veena Vijayan and Arya Rajendran SFacebook | Arya Rajendran S
news Politics Friday, July 01, 2022 - 12:06

Thiruvananthapuram Mayor and CPI(M) leader Arya Rajendran came out in support of Veena Vijayan, daughter of Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan, who is facing allegations of being the ‘mastermind’ in the gold smuggling case. Close on the heels of gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh’s allegation that Veena was the chief conspirator behind the Kerala government’s controversial Sprinklr deal, Arya posted on Facebook on Thursday, June 30, saying that one could go to any extent and hound a person just because she was a woman. Alleging that Veena, an entrepreneur, was being attacked for the sole reason that she was Pinarayi Vijayan’s daughter, Arya wrote she had no doubt the allegations against her would prove to be like “lines drawn on water”.

“Whenever a controversy in Kerala involves a woman, it will be discussed with a special interest. If the woman is someone from the Left, that interest reaches its peak,” Arya said in her post. While it was natural for politicians to be questioned, what responsibility did Veena have towards any developments in the state’s current political sphere, she asked, adding that Veena too, was entitled to her rights and privacy like everyone else. Have these constant discussions on her helped find any substance to the allegations, Arya asked, adding that Veena was repeatedly being humiliated in the name of these discussions.

“These attacks (on Veena) did not begin today. For one-and-a-half decades, she has been constantly harassed over her father’s politics. What especially encourages me to stand by her now, is the fact that those who are hounding her haven’t been able to convert any of these allegations to even a petty case against her. Those who think that all this will destroy or discourage Veena will only get tired eventually,” Arya stated in the post.

Veena had become a topic of debate at the Kerala Legislative Assembly on Tuesday, with Congress MLA Mathew Kuzhalnadan alleging that before the appointment of Swapna Suresh in the IT Department was questioned, the website of Veena's company Exalogic had referred to one of the directors of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Jaik Balakumar, as her mentor. It may be noted that Swapna was employed by the PwC at the IT Space Park as a consultant in 2020, at the alleged initiative of former Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, M Sivasankar, who is also an accused in the case.

According to Kuzhalnadan, after this revelation came to light, the website of Exalogic went down in May 2020, and when it came back online in June, the reference to Jaik had vanished. Vijayan retaliated harshly to the Congress legislator’s claims, slamming him for uttering ‘blatant lies’ about his daughter. Subsequently in a media conference on Wednesday, Kuzhalnadan showed a screenshot of the archived webpage to establish his accusation of Veena’s link with Jaik, soon after which Swapna came out with her allegation against Veena. “I was working for a key government project named Spacepark when the Sprinklr controversy was raging. Veena was the mastermind behind the deal. Everyone knows about her relationship with PwC,” she said.

The US-based company Sprinklr had entered into a contract with the Kerala government in 2020, allowing the latter to use its software to analyse the data concerning people under observation for COVID-19. This had led to a huge political outcry in the state, with then Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala alleging that a serious data breach was taking place through the deal.

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