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Kerala CM criticizes V Muraleedharan, says smuggling of gold through diplomatic baggage started after he became Union minister | India News

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala Prime Minister Pinarayi Vijayan criticized Union Minister V Muraleedharan on Saturday for his comments on the gold smuggling case, claiming that the smuggling of gold through diplomatic baggage began after the BJP state leader took over as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs. .
Vijayan claimed that Muraleedharan, on multiple occasions, had said that the luggage seized by Customs was not diplomatic.
“We have heard from a minister of state who is in charge of the Union Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is said to be in charge of the Middle East. Is there an estimate of how much gold has been smuggled since he became minister? ”
“Didn’t the smuggling of gold through diplomatic channels start after this minister took office? Does this minister have anything to do with the person who persuaded the accused to say that the smuggling was not diplomatic baggage?” Vijayan asked at a press conference.
The CPI (M) in Kerala had alleged that Muraleedharan had been insisting all along that the bag in which customs officials seized 30 kg of gold at the international airport here on July 5 last year was not diplomatic cargo.
Referring to the position taken by Muraleedharan on the issue of gold smuggling through diplomatic baggage, Vijayan said: “When the Minister of Finance said in Parliament that gold was smuggled in diplomatic baggage, why did this Minister of State (Muraleedharan) repeatedly adopted the opposite? View?
“It is the same minister who now wields the sword of Customs against the state government,” Vijayan said.
The prime minister’s statement against Muraleedharan came hours after he called the CPI (M) accusation that the BJP was politically using investigative agencies as “childish”.
A day after Customs, investigating the gold smuggling case, claimed that key defendant Swapna Suresh had made “shocking revelations” against him, the president of the assembly, P Sreeramakrishnan, and some ministers about the “smuggling” of dollars involving UAE consulate officials, Vijayan said the agency was trying to “smear” members of the state cabinet in connection with the case.
The Customs Department had seized gold worth approximately 15 million rupees from “diplomatic baggage” on 5 July last year and has arrested many people, including Swapna Suresh and Sarith PS, former employees of the UAE consulate. United.

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