Suryanelli gang-rape case: Kerala Govt to seek legal opinion

Kerala Govt will seek legal opinion on whether a fresh probe is required into allegations against Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien.

Kottayam: Kerala Government will seek legal opinion on whether a fresh probe is required into allegations against Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien in the wake of the victim in the Suryanelli gang-rape case persisting with her charge, a senior minister said on Sunday.
Claiming his name was being "dragged" into the Suryanelli case, Kurien, a Congress leader, on his part said he suspected his political rivals, including some in his party, were involved in the `conspiracy` to malign him.

CPI(M) politbureau member MA Baby, meanwhile, said it will be morally inappropriate for Kurien to continue in his post in view of the allegations levelled against him.

"Wait..Let us seek legal opinion on whether a fresh probe is required. We will consult the Advocate General and Director General of Prosecution. On the basis of their opinion we will take a decision", Home Minister Thiruvananchur Radhakrishnan told reporters here when asked about the demand for a fresh probe.

Baby declined to comment on his senior colleague VS Achuthanandan`s charges that the then Advocate General had not taken proper action in the case when the LDF ministry headed by late EK Nayanar was in power.

"My personal opinion is, it is morally incorrect for him to continue in the post. The national leadership of the Congress party should think about this and take a decision," Baby told reporters in Kannur.

Kurien`s name figured again in connection with the case after the victim wrote to her advocate in Delhi on January 29 to explore the possibility of filing a review petition, seeking a fresh probe against Kurien.

Yesterday, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had ruled out re-investigation into the gangrape case, saying the allegation was not new and top courts had cleared charges raised against Kurien. The victim also faxed a letter to Chandy yesterday, seeking a fresh probe against Kurien.

While maintaining that he is totally innocent, Kurien told Malayalam TV channels there was a `conspiracy` behind the renewed attempt to drag his name after he was cleared by courts and investigations found the charge baseless.

Kurien said he had been absolved of the charge by the Supreme Court after four teams of police officers under UDF and LDF governments investigated the case. "If there is any lapse in all these probes, you should ask the Investigating Officers," he said.

"I have some inferences about who are working against me. I am not disclosing who they are at this juncture. I may do so at a later stage," Kurien told a channel.