Kerala gold smuggling case: Opp says controversial businessman has close links with CM Vijayan

Kiran Marshal, the controversial businessman from Alappuzha, who allegedly facilitated escape of gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh to Bengaluru, is “like a son” to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. The case has rocked the Pinarayi Vijayan government. Kiran has links with all top officials and top notch politicians. It is said that his hotel was inaugurated by Pinarayi Vijayan’s wife. During last election campaigning, the chief minister took rest at the businessman’s house.

Congress Lok Sabha member and convenor of the party-led UDF, Behanan on Tuesday told the media about the role played by Kiran in allowing Swapna and Sandip Nair to escape from Kerala by road to Bengaluru earlier this month.

“This Kiran wields considerable influence among the top notch ruling front politicians. His house has been a venue for such high profile people in the recent past. A probe will reveal who all had visited his house in the recent past,” said Behanan.

The BJP had also questioned the role played by Kiran in the facilitation of the prime accused in the gold smuggling case.

Reacting sharply to these allegations Kiran told the media on Tuesday that all that is being said about him is baseless and unfounded and he has no role at all in the present controversy.

Meanwhile, the NIA court in Kochi on Tuesday extended the custody of Swapna and Sandip till July 24 as the NIA probe team said that they needed more time for questioning and collecting evidence.

The gold smuggling case first surfaced when PS Sarith, a former employee of the UAE Consulate here, was arrested by the Customs Department on July 5 when he was facilitating smuggling of 30 kg of gold in the diplomatic baggage to Thiruvananthapuram from Dubai.

On Tuesday the NIA team brought Sarith from Kochi to the state capital and took him to all the places where the smuggling gang had met.