Kerala HC asks State-run KSIDC to prove it sought KMRL‘s explanation over transactions with Veena Vijayan’s firm

It has been alleged that CMRL had paid a total of ₹1.72 crore to Pinarayi Vijayan's daughter Veena and her firm, Exalogic, between 2017 and 2020, though no service was rendered.

ByPTI

Published Feb 13, 2024 | 10:01 AMUpdated Feb 13, 2024 | 10:01 AM

Kerala HC asks State-run KSIDC to prove it sought KMRL‘s explanation over transactions with Veena Vijayan’s firm

The Kerala High Court on Monday, 12 February, asked the state-run KSIDC to provide documents to prove it had sought an explanation from Cochin Minerals and Rutile Ltd (KMRL) over the alleged financial transactions made to the IT company of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s daughter Veena Thaikkandiyil and others.

The court was hearing a plea by Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) seeking to quash the central government order directing an investigation into its affairs by SFIO under the Companies Act.

The Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) is probing KSIDC, the IT firm Exalogic Solutions, and Kochi-based mines company CMRL.

KSIDC on Monday submitted before the High Court that it had no role in any of the alleged transactions mentioned in the case and sought to exempt it from the probe.

It also submitted before the court that it had sought an explanation from the CMRL in connection with the matter.

Justice Devan Ramachandran, who heard the plea, asked KSIDC to provide documents to prove that it had sought an explanation from CMRL.

KSIDC has 13.4 percent shares in CMRL.

Related: Pinarayi Vijayan’s daughter Veena and her firm — what is the Union ministry probing?

No coercive action against KSIDC

The corporation said the SFIO probe would affect its credibility and reputation. The court, however, said that no coercive action should be taken against KSIDC while the petition is pending.

The court has now listed the matter for further hearing on 26 February.

On 7 February, the court refused to put on hold the SFIO probe into the three companies on a plea moved by the KSIDC.

The SFIO had on 7 February, visited the KSIDC’s head office in Thiruvananthapuram.

Two days ago, it had visited the office of CMRL, which has been accused of making payments to Veena’s firm Exalogic without receiving any of the company’s services in return.

Last year, a Malayalam daily reported that CMRL had paid a total of ₹1.72 crore to Veena and Exalogic between 2017 and 2020. The news report cited the ruling of an interim board for settlement and said CMRL previously had an agreement with Veena’s IT firm for consultancy and software support services.

It alleged that though no service was rendered by her firm, the amount was paid monthly “due to her relationship with a prominent person”.

This year, another report cited findings by the Registrar of Companies (ROC) against Veena’s firm.

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