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Court allows further probe into palm oil case

Monday, 14 March 2011 - 1:35pm IST | Place: Thiruvananthapuram | Agency: PTI

A vigilance court in Thiruvananthapuram allowed a plea from the prosecution to further probe the Palmolein import graft case in which PJ Thomas is an accused.

The Vigilance Court in Thiruvananthapuram today allowed a plea from the prosecution to further probe the palmolein import graft case in which PJ Thomas, whose appointment as central vigilance commissioner was struck down by the Supreme Court, is an accused.

The prosecution in a petition filed earlier this month had sought the court's direction for further probe into the case, contending that some more persons were likely to become accused.

Opposition leader Oommen Chandy, who was finance minister in the UDF ministry headed by the late K Karunakaran, had cleared the palmolein import deal in 1992.

The case relates to alleged corruption in the import of palmolein from Malaysia at exorbitant rates, which allegedly caused a loss of Rs2.32 crore to the exchequer in 1991-92.

The accused includes then food minister TH Musthafa and Thomas, who was food secretary during the period.

Musthafa's advocate had recently moved a petition that like the concession given to Chandy, the then minister of finance, his client should also be absolved from the case.

The charge sheet in the case was filed by the Vigilance and Anti-corruption Bureau in 2003.

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