Published On: Thu, Jul 9th, 2020

I have no role in gold smuggling, claims Swapna Suresh

Thiruvananthapuram: The prime suspect in the recent gold smuggling case in Kerala, Swapna Suresh, who is on the run, has finally broken her silence in an audio message, saying she had no role to play in the matter.

My job demanded me to meet many people in power

The seizure of 30 kg gold from a diplomatic consignment at the Trivandrum International Airport on Sunday has snowballed into a major political controversy in Kerala as the prime suspect, Swapna, a high-profile woman who wears many hats, happens to be close to the ruling Left Democratic Front government in the state.

In the audio which surfaced on Thursday, Swapna said she had no role to play in the smuggling case.

“All what I did was when I was asked by the Consulate on the delay in the baggage getting cleared, I spoke to the Customs. All I did was that, and I have no idea from where the baggage came and what its contents were and such details. The loss in the present controversy is for me and my family and I am in hiding because of fear. I am on the verge of committing suicide as I am being taken to task and I have nothing to do with this smuggling,” said a sobbing Swapna.

The Customs made the seizure on Sunday and since then Swapna has been on the run, while her former colleague at the UAE Consulate has been arrested by the Customs. She had earlier worked with the UAE Consulate in the liaison wing.

She has already approached the Kerala High Court which will hear her anticipatory bail plea on Friday.

Despite having dubious qualifications, Swapna, who happens to be close to the ruling Left Democratic Front government in the state, was holding a high paying job and was very close to senior IAS officer M. Sivasankar, Secretary to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, and also the state’s IT Secretary.

As a quick damage control exercise, Vijayan has shown the exit door to Sivasankar and removed him from both the posts. But the Congress and the BJP have intensified their protests and have asked Vijayan to quit and face the probe.

By now the social media is also flooded with pictures of Swapna where she is seen in the company of Vijayan, and other top brass of the CPI-M, including Kerala Assembly Speaker P. Sreeramakrishnan.

“When I was working in the UAE Consulate, my role was to facilitate the administration of the Consular General. My job demanded me to meet many people in power. Whenever VVIPS from UAE came, I also facilitated their visit in Kerala and four other states. That was my job,” said Swapna.

Meanwhile, with Swapna revealing that she only followed up with the request of the Consulate on the status of the baggage, it remains to be seen if the Customs seeks permission from the highest level to find out from the Consulate about her revelations.

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