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Thursday, October 29, 2020

Don’t arrest Sivasankar till Oct 23, Kerala HC tells ED

The court gave the direction to the ED, probing the money trail in the Kerala gold smuggling case, on Sivasankaran's plea seeking anticipatory bail. Adjourning the matter to October 23, the court directed the central agency not to arrest him till then.

By: PTI | Kochi | Updated: October 15, 2020 4:09:26 pm
Kerala gold smuggling case: ED takes M Sivasankar into custody after HC rejects his bail pleasFormer principal secretary to Kerala chief minister M Sivasankar is being probed in connection with the gold smuggling case by the ED and the Customs. (File photo)

The Kerala High Court on Thursday directed the Enforcement Directorate not to arrest suspended IAS officer and former principal secretary to the Kerala Chief Minister, M Sivasankar, till October 23 and asked it to file its report on the anticipatory bail plea filed by him.

The court gave the direction to the ED, probing the money trail in the Kerala gold smuggling case, on Sivasankaran’s plea seeking anticipatory bail. Adjourning the matter to October 23, the court directed the central agency not to arrest him till then.

Apprehending arrest by the ED, Sivasankar, who is facing probe in connection with the case, had moved the court on Wednesday seeking anticipatory bail. When the matter was taken up for consideration on Thursday, the ED said it has not taken a decision to arrest Sivasankar.

It also sought time for filing a detailed reply. In his plea, Sivasankar had said as a responsible government servant, he had extended maximum cooperation in the investigation of the offence.

He was summoned by the ED on multiple occasions to confront the statements given by different accused and witnesses, he said. He had expressed fears that media’s “false propaganda” and frivolous news items” and constant demand for his arrest for creating news value has created a situation where the investigating agencies are forced to “save their skin” from allegations by arresting him, thereby playing to the fourth estate and avoiding criticism.

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