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Court says Pinarayi’s letter to Lavalin suspicious

Court says Pinarayi’s letter to Lavalin suspicious

Thiruvananthapuram: The CBI special court has said the letter written by CPI-M State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, who was then the Power Minister, to the SNC Lavalin Company creates various suspicions.

While hearing the discharge petition filed by Pinarayi Vijayan in the case on Saturday, the court has said there is no clarity on various issues in the letter to the SNC Lavalin.

The court asked why a global tender was not called for to modernise electricity projects in the State. Further, the court also inquired whether a move was made to check if further discounts could be sourced on the loan.

In the discharge petition, Vijayan stated that there was no material evidence uncovered by the investigators to connect him to the crime and sought exemption from trial.

The CBI had on July 31 filed an affidavit after Vijayan approached the CBI court with a discharge petition claiming he had done no wrong. In its affidavit, the CBI probe team had claimed that it had sufficient evidence to link Pinarayi Vijayan to the SNC Lavalin case relating to the renovation of three power plants.

In June 2009, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed charge-sheets against nine accused in the Rs.374-crore scam related to the Canada-based SNC Lavalin company.

Vijayan, as then State Power Minister, had inked the final agreement in 1997 for the renovation of three power plants with SNC Lavalin. He was arraigned as the seventh accused.

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