Palarivattom flyover: Judicial custody of accused extended

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Kochi, Sep 19 (IANS) A court here on Thursday extended the judicial custody of the four arrested officials, accused of graft in the construction of the Palarivattom flyover, till October 3.

The four arrested officials include — the project director Sumit Goyal of RDS Projects, former Public Works Department Secretary T.O. Sooraj, Benny Paul who represented the KITCO and M.T. Thankachen from the Roads and Bridges Development Corporation. The Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau had arrested them on charges of corruption.

While being taken to the court Sooraj told the media that he has done no wrong and he did what was asked by the then former Public Works Department Minister and senior Legislator V.K. Ebrahim Kunju and also the Corporation’s Managing Director Mohammed Hanish.

Earlier this week, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan asked ‘Metroman’ E. Sreedharan to take charge of rebuilding the Palarivattom flyover.

Built at a cost of Rs 42 crore during the Oommen Chandy regime, the 750-metre flyover was supposed to serve for over 100 years. It was opened in October 2016 and within three years the flyover started crumbling and was shut for traffic.

The flyover was built by the Delhi-based RDS Projects for the state-owned Roads and Bridges Development Corporation. KITCO was the supervision consultant for the project.

On Wednesday, the Kerala High Court, while hearing the bail plea of all the accused asked the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) to file a report on the Palarivattom flyover and ordered to prepare a list of names who had a role in the construction.

–IANS

sg/sdr

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