New Delhi, Jan 4 (IANS) The Supreme Court Wednesday dismissed a plea seeking monitoring by the Kerala High Court of the probe into the 1991 palm oil import case and setting up of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) on it.
At present, the case is being investigated by Kerala’s vigilance department.
The petitioner, Alphonse Kannanthanam – a former Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer – expressed apprehension that the current probe may be biased as Chief Minister Oommen Chandy was the finance minister when the palm oil was imported.
He said the probe must be entrusted to an SIT comprising distinguished police officers.
The apex court bench of Justice Aftab Alam and Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai rejected Kannanthanam’s plea that Kerala High Court should monitor the investigation, as the Supreme Court had done in the 2G scam.
Earlier, the Kerala High Court Oct 28, 2011 declined Kannanthanam’s plea seeking its monitoring of the probe. He had then challenged the verdict in the apex court.
It is alleged that the Kerala government in 1991 imported palm oil from Malaysia at an inflated price, causing a loss of over Rs.2 crore to the state exchequer.