Thiruvananthapuram | Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy today met KM Mani, who resigned as Finance Minister yesterday in the wake of adverse remarks by High Court against him in the bar bribery case.
Oommen Chandy went this morning to Mani’s residence here, followed by his Cabinet colleagues, including Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala, Excise Minister K Babu and Agriculture Minister KP Mohan, who separately called on the Kerala Congress (M) leader. Though Chandy refused to talk to the media, Chennithala said he met Mani as he was a senior legislator. It was a courtesy call, he said.
The Cabinet met today for the first time without Mani’s presence. 82-year-old Mani, against whom an FIR was registered in the bar bribery case, resigned last night after pressure mounted on him from the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front to quit.
The High Court had on Monday upheld further probe in the case against Mani. Working President of Kerala State Bar Hotel Owners Association Biju Ramesh had alleged in October last year that Mani had demanded Rs 5 crore as bribe from the Association and accepted Rs 1 crore for renewal of licences to over 400 Indian-made foreign liquor bars, triggering a political storm.
An FIR had been filed against Mani in the Vigilance Court last year after a ‘quick verification’ by vigilance department of the allegation by Biju Ramesh.
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