Sex scandal dirt on ex-judges thickens

via VR Jayaraj | Kozhikode - Daily Pioneer published on February 1, 2011

The dirt thrown by the infamous ice cream parlour sex scandal on the Judiciary in Kerala thickened on Tuesday with more claims on evidences coming out in support of the charge that two former judges of the High Court had taken bribes to issue orders favoring wrongdoers.

Businessman KA Rauf, co-brother of former minister and Muslim league leader PK Kunhalikutty, on Tuesday claimed that he had evidences to prove that Justice K Thankappan and Justice K Narayana Kurup had accepted money to issue orders in the case favoring Kunhalikutty in 2007.

The Kerala High Court is already in the news due to allegations against the relatives of former CJI KG Balakrishnan, who was a lawyer and a judge there. His son-in-law PV Sreenijin is a lawyer in the High Court and his brother KG Bhaskaran was Special Government Pleader there and both are facing charges of amassing wealth illegally.

“I was there when KC Peter – former Additional Director General of Prosecutions – handed over the money to Sunny, son-in-law of Justice Kurup,” said Rauf, who had played a key role in saving Kunhalikutty from court proceedings in the scandal. Justice Kurup had issued a verdict refusing to hand over the probe into the scandal to the CBI, effectively saving Kunhalikutty.

Rejina, one of the sex scandal victims and a witness in the case had said in her earlier statement that Kunhalikutty had sexually abused her at thee different locations 14 years back. However, she later withdrew her statements to turn hostile. According to Rauf, Kunhalikutty had spent several lakhs of rupees to make Rejina and other witnesses change their statements.

Rauf claimed that he had driven Peter to the house of Justice Thankappan to speak to him about the need to favor Kunhalikutty when the case came up in his bench. “I saw Peter talking to the judge,” he said. Justice Thankappan had granted the pleas of the accused to transfer the sex abuse case to a particular court and in-camera trial rejecting the objections raised by the victims and witnesses.

“I am certain that it was Peter himself who had worked to get a verdict favorable to Kunhalikutty (by influencing Justice Kurup) through Sunny… However, the financial deal with Justice Thankappan was not carried out by Peter but by a former Additional Advocate General,” Rauf added. Sunny also denied the charge.

The allegations against the two judges were first leveled by a television channel on Sunday through a video clip in which Peter was shown as saying the duo had passed verdicts by accepting bribes aggregating Rs 40 lakh. However, Peter later denied having said anything like that.

Justices Kurup and Thankappan on Tuesday reiterated their denial of the charges. Both of them also threatened to initiate legal proceedings against Rauf and others. “Rauf or Peter has not approached me nor have I considered any case directly connected to Kunhalikutty,” Justice Thankappan said.

Kurup said that he had refused to hand over the probe into the case to the CBI because it was just a sex scandal. “The CBI is not supposed to investigate sex scandals. Also, I could not consider the plea for CBI probe just because Kunhalikutty was involved. What is important is not the persons but the subject matter,” Justice Kurup said.

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