Kerala has been witnessing a political storm over the startling revelations by Swapna Suresh, a key accused in the sensational gold-smuggling in the diplomatic bags case, with the State government allegedly using vigilance officials to pick up a co-accused and a complaint being lodged by an LDF MLA seeking a probe into the "conspiracy" behind her allegations.
The entire chain of events played out like the screenplay of a thriller movie starting with Suresh in the morning telling reporters outside her office in Palakkad that her allegations against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan came in the wake of threats to her life and not because of any personal or political agenda.
As the tension grips in Kerala politics, here's all you need to know about they key accused - Swapna Suresh:
In 2013, Suresh, a resident of Dubai, joined as an HR executive with Air India SATS, an airport service firm in Thiruvananthapuram. At the firm, she allegedly conspired with another senior executive at the firm to frame an airport staff in a sexual harassment case by forging signatures of women employees. According to reports, she had prepared as many as 17 complaints, in bogus names, against the person, who later complained to the state police seeking a probe into the conspiracy. Suresh was listed as an accused, but the probe was derailed, allegedly because of her influence.
In 2016, Suresh joined the UAE Consulate-General Office when it opened in the state capital, with her exposure to the emirates and fluency in Arabic standing her in good stead. As the Kerala government maintains a good rapport with UAE, home to lakhs of expats from Kerala, the local staff of the Consulate rose into prominence.
Suresh is currently living with her family consisting of her husband and two children, the younger son is studying in third standard and the elder daughter is studying for the second year degree course.
Suresh’s alleged role in the gold smuggling racket and her connections to former principal secretary M Sivasankar, under whom she worked as a contract staff with the state government’s flagship Space Park project, has now snowballed into a major controversy in Kerala.