Confirming receiving a notice from the Enforcement Directorate (ED) asking him to appear before them on August 11 in Kochi, two-time former State Finance Minister and top CPI-M leader on Thursday said this was a clear case of harassment and will seek legal opinion to decide whether to appear or not.
The reason for the ED to serve the notice is to find out from him the functioning of the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB), which had come under fire from the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.
KIIFB was established as the principal funding arm of the government of Kerala in 1999. Its objective is to channelise funds for critical and large public infrastructure projects in Kerala.
In Kerala, CAG has become a persona non grata ever since economist turned Isaac, early last year took on the Constitutional body head on, when he was holding office. After slamming the CAG, the Pinarayi Vijayan government passed a resolution against the CAG report (which termed the off-budget borrowings through KIIFB as unconstitutional), with the Congress-led Opposition opposing it.
“This is the second notice that I have got from the ED asking me to appear. While the first one came last month asking me to appear with all the books of accounts, this time, perhaps they would have realised their folly and have not asked that,” said Isaac to the media and added that he has been called under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).
“However, this time they have asked me to appear with my details of accounts and assets of the past 10 years and it includes the companies, where I was director. The Reserve Bank of India is the regulatory body for FEMA and has never said that there was anything wrong. What’s happening now is a clear case of harassment, and with regards to my assets, it’s easy to prepare as I have nothing,” added Isaac.