Assembly statement not enough: Mullappally

Kozhikode: Union Minister of State for Home Mullappally Ramachandran has said that there is something ‘mysterious’ in the statement of Kerala Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan that the investigation in the Nilambur train sabotage bid case would be handed over to the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

Addressing newspersons here on Tuesday, Mr. Ramachandran said the Centre had not received any request from the State, but had only come across his statement made in the Assembly. Mr. Balakrishnan’s statement revealed that the State government wanted to ‘shrug off its responsibility’ and pass the buck.

He said there was no rationale in handing over the Nilambur probe to the NIA. Mr. Balakrishnan should clarify whether his statement acknowledged the fact that the State investigating machinery had failed to probe the case. “The NIA can’t take up all cases. It can take up a case only if the government fails to investigate a case and can’t go ahead with it,” Mr. Ramachandran said.

The Minister said the NIA would be overburdened if all cases were handed over to the newly constituted agency. Besides, the Centre endorsed the statement of Kerala’s Director-General of Police Jacob Punnoose that both cases, including the recent assault on a professor at Muvattupuzha, were going on the right track. “In this context, I wonder why the State government should decide to hand over the case to the NIA,” Mr. Ramachandran said.

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