The Kozhikode police on Thursday arrested solar scam accused Saritha S Nair for failing to appear before the court despite being issued an arrest warrant. Officials of the Kozhikode Kasaba police station took Saritha Nair into custody early on Thursday morning from Thiruvananthapuram. The arrest warrant was issued by the Kozhikode Chief Judicial Magistrate Court-3 in a cheating case, in which Saritha is accused of failing to deliver solar panels to a person after taking money from him. According to reports, she allegedly cheated him of over Rs 42 lakh.
The court had earlier asked Saritha to appear before it on February 25, but she failed to do so. The police will produce her before the court later on Thursday. According to reports, similar warrants have been issued against Saritha by a total of eight courts, including courts in Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta districts. Police had then informed the courts that Saritha was absconding.
Saritha and her partner Biju Radhakrishnan are the prime accused in the multi-crore solar scam. The duo swindled crores of money from various people by promising to set up solar panels.
The solar scam became a major controversy in the state when the Oommen Chandy led UDF government was in power. Many Congress leaders, including then Chief Minister Chandy, were caught in controversies pertaining to the scam, which also included allegations of sexual assault. The solar scam was one of the major poll issues that was raised by the CPI(M) led Left Democratic Front government during its campaign for the 2016 Assembly polls, which finally resulted in the Congress-led United Democratic Front losing power.
This case in which Saritha has been arrested was registered during the tenure of the Chandy government, and according to reports, there are around half a dozen similar cheating cases registered against her starting from 2012 at various police stations in Kerala.
In another case related to a fake appointment, where money was collected from various people by promising them a job at the state-run Kerala State Beverages Corporation (Bevco), the police have already arrested one of Saritha’s partners.
On Wednesday, an audio clip alleged to be that of Saritha surfaced wherein she is heard talking about the alleged role of Excise Minister TP Ramakrishnan and the then MD of Bevco Sparjan Kumar.
Flatly denying having anything to do with the fake appointment case, Minister Ramakrishnan said, “Never ever have I had anything to do with such people. Strict action will be taken if any foul play happened in the appointments made.”
(With inputs from IANS)
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