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Solar Scam continues to drown Kerala assembly

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Thiruvananthapuram: Ongoing ‘solar scan’ continued to cause chaos in the Kerala assembly following the argument between the Oommen Chandy government and the opposition.

Like on Thursday, when the assembly had to be adjourned following the opposition protests and demand for the resignation of Chief Minister Chandy on the charge of his involvement in the scam, acrimony between the two sides forced another adjournment soon after the question hour.

The trouble started when the treasury benches responded to the opposition raising the solar scam issue by referring to another scandal, of the year 2000 vintage, to embarrass the government.

The Leader of Opposition VS Achuthanandan of the CPI-M broached the solar scam through a submission when he asked Labour Minister Shibu Baby John to clarify a remark he had made on Thursday.

“Yesterday you (John) said that there is a deep-rooted conspiracy behind the way the prime accused in the scam, Biju Radhakrishnan, deposed before the judicial probe commission. At one point of time, you almost disclosed the name, but at the last second, two of your cabinet colleagues refrained you from revealing. So, today we wish to know who are behind this,” said Achuthanandan.

John then got up and said that at the appropriate time he would let everyone know who was behind this.

“It’s for this, I said yesterday that I am also going to implead before the Commission because this has to come out. But before that, I request Achuthanandan to reveal the VIP involved in the Killiroor sex scandal,” hit back John.

The Killiroor sex case saw a young teenage girl being sexually assaulted in early 2000. She later died in mysterious circumstances. Just before the 2006 assembly elections, Achuthanandan said there was a VIP behind the case and if he came to power he would take them to the task.

He did nothing even after becoming the Chief Minister.

John’s reference to Killiroor sex scandal had the entire opposition up in arms and they trooped into the well of the house, forcing Speaker N. Sakthan eventually to adjourn the proceedings for the day.

It was on Wednesday that Radhakrishnan told the commission that he had video evidence of Chandy and two of his cabinet colleagues in compromising positions with Saritha Nair.

Saritha Nair is the second accused and live-in partner of Radhakrishnan’s.

The solar scam came to light in 2013 when it was found that Team Solar, a fraudulent company, cheated several influential people of crores of rupees by offering to make them business partners or by offering to install solar power units for them and receiving advance payments for the same.

The company used two women to create political contacts with links even to the Chief Minister’s office.

Radhakrishnan, the main accused, and his live-in partner Saritha Nair were later arrested for cheating investors.

She is out on bail while Radhakrishnan is behind bars after it was proved that he murdered his first wife.(IANS)

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Devendra Fadnavis Sworn-in as Maharashtra Chief Minister, Ajit Pawar as Deputy Chief Minister

BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis as the new Chief Minister of Maharashtra & Congress Party leader Ajit Pawar as the new Deputy Chief Minister

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Chief Minister of Maharashtra taking oath
Hon Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari administered the oath of Chief Minister of Maharashtra to Shri Devendra Fadnavis and Deputy CM to Shri Ajit Pawar.

In a stunning political development, Maharashtra Governor B.S. Koshyari on Saturday morning administered the oath of office to Bharatiya Janata Party leader Devendra Fadnavis as the new Chief Minister of Maharashtra and Nationalist Congress Party leader Ajit Pawar as the new Deputy Chief Minister.

The two were sworn-in at a function in the Raj Bhavan held around 8 a.m. in the presence of a few BJP and NCP leaders, and other government officials.

Soon afterwards, Fadnavis said that the Governor would give them a letter instructing when to prove the new government’s majority on the floor of the Assembly.

He added that the cabinet would be expanded at a later date.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has conveyed his best wishes to Fadnavis for taking over as the CM for a second consecutive term, and to Pawar on his appointment as Dy.CM.

A letter was issued from Union Home Ministry simultaneously that said that President’s Rule was lifted from Maharashtra.

Chief Minister of Maharashtra Shri Devendra Fadnavis
Chief Minister of Maharashtra Shri Devendra Fadnavis taking oath.

Speaking to the media, Fadnavis said that after the elections, the Shiv Sena which had secured a clear majority in alliance with BJP rejected the public mandate and was engaged in forming the government with some other parties necessitating President’s Rule in Maharashtra.

Since it did not appear possible for those three parties to form a ‘khichdi’ (hotch-potch’) government and in order to provide a stable government to the state the decision was taken.

“Along with Ajit Pawar and support of others, we submitted a list to the Governor who discussed the issue with the centre to conclude that a viable government could be formed,” Fadnavis said.

Accordingly, after discussing with the Centre, the Governor invited Fadnavis and Pawar to form the government which was sworn-in.

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On his part, Ajit Pawar said that giving the state a stable government was the need of the hour which did not appear to be happening.

“I was tired of the continuous negotiations going on and so decided to go with Fadnavis and give a stable government to the state,” Pawar said. (IANS)