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LDF alleges corruption in the hike in liquor price

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LDF alleges corruption in the hike in liquor price
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Thiruvananthapuram: The CPI-M led Opposition LDF Monday levelled corruption charges against Excise Minister K Babu in connection with the decision to increase the price of foreign liquor bought by the State Beverages Corporation (SBC).

The LDF members also staged a walkout from the Assembly during general discussion on the budget for 2013-14 fiscal which started today, after their demand for a judicial probe was rejected.

Babu denied the charge and pointed out that liquor companies received Rs 49 crore additional income due to the six

per cent hike in prices of liquor.

"In that case how can they pay Rs 100 crore as commission?" he asked.

He pointed out that the decision to hike liquor prices was taken by the purchase committee of the SBC and government had no role in that. Liquor prices were raised during the previous LDF rule also, he said.

Babu sought to turn the tables on LDF when he said, CPI-M MLA and former Excise Minister P K Gurudasan had met him and recommended an increase in liquor prices.

Gurudasan in his reply said, he only told the minister that their demand for increase of price seemed justified.

Babu M Pallissery (CPI-M) raised the charges of corruption during discussion.

He alleged that secret meetings were held in Dubai to help liquor companies of Karnataka and there was a corruption of Rs 100 crore in the deal.

Chief Minister's Financial Advisor Shafi Mather also took part in the meeting, he alleged.

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