Document reveals LDF Govt infomred centre on palmoelin case

In a letter to the Secretary to the Department of Personnel and Training on Octorer 10, 2006,which surfaced today, the then additional chief secretary Lizzy Jacob had stated that the government wanted to go ahead with the palmolein import graft case in which Thomas figured as an accused.

In her letter, the then ACS Lizzy Jacob wanted the decision of the previous UDF Government to close the case treated as withdrawn. " I am directed to request the Government of India to treat the (state) Government letter with the request to withdraw the proposal seeking sanction to prosecute P J Thomas and Jiji Thomson under Prevention of Corruption Act as withdrawn and to accord sanction to prosecute Thomas and Jiji Thomson as requested on December 31, 1999."

The letter surfaced a day after Chief Minister V S Achuthandan hit back at his Maharashtra counterpart Prithviraj Chavan for blaming Kerala government for the CVC appointment fiasco.

In a statement issued yesterday, Achuthanandan had accused Chavan of "lying" on the issue to "hide" his fault. The sensational case refers to alleged corruption in import of palmolein from Malaysia by the UDF Government headed by late K Karunakaran 1991. Thomas was the food secretary at the time and Jiji Thomson MD of the state civil supplies corporation.

In December 2006, when Congress leader Oommen Chandy was the chief minister, the state government decided to close the case. However, the decision to close the case was withdrawn after Achuthanandan became the Chief Minister in May 2006 as he had vigerously pursued the case from the start.

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