Kerala CM rejects demand for CBI probe into PSC scandal

Pinarayi Vijayan

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday rejected the opposition UDF's demand for a CBI probe into the controversial Public Service Commission (PSC) exam scandal, following which members of the front staged a walk out in the Assembly.

The accused would not get any political protection in the case and the government would ensure that they get the punishment they deserved, Vijayan said while replying to an adjournment motion moved by the Congress-led UDF.

"A comprehensive probe is going on in the case. The Crime Branch of the state police can effectively carry out the investigation. So, no other agency is required for the investigation," the Chief Minister said rejecting the CBI probe demand.

The government had taken all possible efforts to bring the culprits before the law, he said adding the examination of the digital evidences collected as part of the investigation was progressing.

In an embarrassment to the Left government, the internal vigilance committee of the PSC, the state's apex recruitment body, had found that former Students' Federation of India (SFI) leaders had indulged in malpractice in the recent civil police officer examination and secured high rank.

R Shivaranjith and Pranav, former leaders of the ruling CPI(M)'s students' union, were found to have received a large number of SMSes in their mobile phones from a phone number during the time of the exam.

Though the accused had been arrested three months ago, they were released on bail last week which the opposition alleged due to police negligence and the "intentional" delaying of submitting the chargesheet.

Seeking leave for the motion, Anoop Jacob (Kerala Congress-Jacob), alleged the crime branch officials were trying to limit the case to just some accused.

There was a large scale conspiracy in the issue and so an impartial agency like CBI should take over the probe to bring out the truth.

As the Chief Minister rejected their demand and Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan denied permission for the motion, the opposition staged a walkout in the House.

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