NIA Court Asks Police Chief To See Gold Smuggling Accused Is Not Ill-Treated In Jail

Kochi:  The NIA court here on Saturday asked State Police chief Anil Kant to see that the accused in the gold smuggling case P.S. Sarith is not ill-treated, after it was brought to the court’s notice by the accused himself.

Sarith along with the other accused is now imprisoned in the Central Prison in the state capital. Acting on a complaint by the mother and sister of Sarith, the NIA court directed the police to produce him before the court on Saturday.

Sarith told the court that three officials including the jail superintendent are tormenting him by not allowing him to even sleep and waking him up in the middle of the night.

In the nearly 75 minute long disposal before the court Sarith said that he is being pressurised to name BJP and Congress leaders in the gold smuggling case.

After his statements before the court, when he was being taken back to jail, he told the media about his ill-treatment in prison.

The NIA court will again look into this on Monday and will giveits final orders on this issue.

In a related development, the jail officials said that Sarith and another accused Rameez are not abiding by the rules of the jail. The other day Rameez was caught by officials smoking inside his cell.

The officials added that the two created problems and demanded food from outside.

Following the statements that Sarith has made before the NIA court, the Customs have started to look if the accused in the case can be moved to a jail outside the state and for that they have sought directions from their head office in Delhi.

Meanwhile, reacting to the statements made by Sarith, State BJP president K. Surendran that it is unacceptable the way things are happening with the knowledge of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who is engaged in heinous acts against the Congress and the BJP leaders in the gold smuggling case.

The Customs had arrested Sarith, a former employee of the UAE Consulate here, on July 5 last year for allegedly smuggling gold in diplomatic baggage of the Consulate. Another former Consulate staff Swapna Suresh and her associate Sandip Nair were arrested by the National Investigation Agency from Bengaluru.

(IANS)