Kerala gold smuggling case: Court disposes of Sivasankar’s bail plea

Kochi: A special NIA court in Kochi on Thursday disposed of an anticipatory bail plea filed by M Sivasankar, former principal secretary of the Kerala Chief Ministers Office, in connection with a case related to gold smuggling.

The court disposed of the anticipatory bail plea after it was informed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) that Sivasankar is not an accused as of now and the arrest is not under consideration. "So the application is premature," the NIA submitted.

Meanwhile, the Kerala High Court is slated to consider the anticipatory bail pleas of Sivasankar in the case registered by the Enforcement Directorate and the Customs department tomorrow.

The Customs department had recently filed its response on the anticipatory bail plea in the matter and submitted that Sivasankar had faked illness to get admitted to a hospital.

Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday submitted before the Kerala High Court that Sivasankar's alleged links with the Gold Smuggling Case accused Swapna Suresh can be established only through custodial interrogation.

In a statement through Special Public Prosecutor TA Unnikrishnan, while opposing Sivasankar's anticipatory bail plea, the ED said, "Sivasankar participated in various activities with Swapna Suresh and others who have been booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). He is also linked to serious economic offences and hence his custodial interrogation is required." "The agency cannot believe Sivasankar's version that he was not aware that Swapna was making money through gold smuggling and by way of kickbacks," Unnikrishnan added.

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