The bail application of M. Sivasankar, the former Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, in the foreign currency smuggling case will be considered on February 1.
Moving the bail application before the Economic Offences Court, Ernakulam, S. Rajeev, the counsel for the accused, submitted that the Customs arrested the petitioner with the intention to prolong his detention. Though the investigation agency had questioned the co-accused and the witnesses in the case on several occasions, they could not collect any material to implicate the petitioner in the crime. Even by the report of the investigation agency, they had questioned the witnesses and the co-accused in the case as early as October 10, last year, he submitted.
Incidentally, the Kerala High Court and the Economic Offences Court had granted him bail in the two cases booked under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and the diplomatic channel gold smuggling cases. If granted bail in this case, Sivasankar could walk out of the jail.
The counsel for Sivasankar submitted that the investigation agency was fully aware of the fact that the petitioner was in their prolonged custody in another case. He was arrested in the present case only with the intention to sabotage the benefit of the bail order granted by the Kerala High Court in the case booked by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), he submitted.
While granting bail in the case booked by the ED, the Kerala High Court had observed that there was no chance of the petitioner escaping the clutches of law. The further detention of the petitioner was not required in the case. The allegations against the petitioner also do not constitute a non-bailable offence, he submitted.
The court extended his remand till February 9.