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Opposition MLAs quit Kerala government-backed diaspora body


Thiruvananthapuram: All legislators of the opposition Congress-led UDF on Thursday quit the state government's recently-formed Loka Kerala Sabha created to channelise investment and expertise of Malayali industrialists settled abroad for the state's betterment following the shocking suicide of a Nigeria-based NRI businessman.

In a memorandum signed by all 41 legislators and submitted to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who is the Sabha's Chairman, the opposition said that there is no point in continuing as members after the NRI businessman committed suicide, allegedly after despite several repeated requests, a civic body refused to sanction his Rs 16 crores state-of-the-art convention centre near Kannur.

Sajan Parayil, 49, was found hanging from the roof of his home in Kannur on Tuesday, allegedly after he failed to get clearance from the Anthoor Municipality.

"Beena, the wife of Sajan, had termed (Anthoor municipality) Chairperson P.K. Shyamala the prime culprit for the suicide of her husband. But the Kerala government has put the blame on government officials and this has caused a huge dent in the confidence of the diaspora and to their dreams of investing in Kerala. So we find no point in continuing as members of the Loka Kerala Sabha," the UDF legislators said in their resignation letter.

This issue has also rocked the ongoing Assembly session as the opposition has been crying foul over the way Vijayan continues to defend Shyamala, the wife of his senior party colleague M.V. Govindan.

Even the Kerala High Court has taken up the case and have asked the Vijayan government to submit all the papers of this business venture on July 15.

The opposition will be sending a delegation of senior legislators to the convention centre site and meet Beena on July 3.



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