Row Over Congress MLA's Presence In House Raided By Tax Sleuths In Kerala

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday said the allegations were serious and a probe will be conducted if any complaint in this regard was made.

Row Over Congress MLA's Presence In House Raided By Tax Sleuths In Kerala

Row Over Congress MLA's Presence In House Raided By Tax Sleuths In Kerala. (Representational)

Thiruvananthapuram/Kochi:

A row has erupted in Kerala over the recent seizure of unaccounted money from a house in Kochi by Income Tax sleuths in the alleged presence of a Congress MLA during a raid following which the ruling Left has demanded the legislator's resignation.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday said the allegations were serious and a probe will be conducted if any complaint in this regard was made.

The Income Tax department had on Thursday reportedly seized black money worth Rs 40-50 lakh from Kochi and there were reports that the local MLA, a senior Congress leader, P T Thomas, who was present allegedly for the transaction, left just before the sleuths reached the location.

The CPI(M) and its youth wing, DYFI, have alleged that Thomas, was present for the illegal transaction during a land deal and sought his resignation.

"The allegations levelled against the MLA in the matter are of serious nature. A probe will be conducted if any complaint is made in this regard," Mr Vijayan told the media.

Mr Thomas has, however, rejected the allegations levelled against him, saying he had no role in the "illegal transaction" and that he had reached the residence of his former driver to settle a land deal after his assistance was sought in the matter.

"When I was about to leave the house after mediating the land deal, four to five people reached the house and introduced themselves as officials from the Income Tax department.

Later I came to know through TV channels that a raid had happened and around Rs 50 lakh was seized," Mr Thomas told the media on Friday.

The CPI(M) in a statement sought the resignation of the MLA, "who interfered in an act which is a crime."

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"The decision to hand over the fund as currency notes was taken after the MLA's interference despite the demand by the landowner and the branch secretary of the CPI(M) to make the transaction through the bank," CPI(M) said.

The Left party alleged that the deal resulted in loss to the state exchequer due to "registration fraud".

The CPI(M) also alleged that the MLA was complicit in the offence where the agreement shows that the amount will be handed over through a bank account but a bag full of cash was given instead.

Meanwhile, the DYFI alleged that an MLA, taking part in such a deal, which affects the economy of the country, was a serious matter.

"Another UDF MLA A Kammaruddin, is also facing over 50 police cases for cheating fraud worth crores. The UDF MLAs have become the part of black money gang.

Mr Thomas does not have the moral right to remain as a legislator.He must resign and a proper investigation should be conducted in the matter," DYFI said in a statement.

A social activist has approachedthe Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Income Tax department seeking to probe the MLA's financial dealings.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)