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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Kerala Lok Ayukta finds Minister KT Jaleel gulity of nepotism, asks him to step down

The Kerala Lok Ayukta has found KT Jaleel, the Minister for Higher Education and Minority affairs guilty of nepotism as he bended existing rules to appoint his close blood relative for a  government job, a clear violation of oath of office. Jaleel used his office to change the required qualifications thereby making sure that only a particular relative of his named KT Adeeb would get selected for that particular position.

The Lok Ayukta has added that since allegations against Jaleel have been substantiated, he should no longer continue as a member of the Kerala council of ministers. Stripped of any morality, they advise him to step down with immediate effect.

KT Adeeb (left), a relative of Kerala Minister and CPM MLA KT Jaleel (right)

Jaleel is the link between the radical Islamists from the now-banned SIMI and the ruling communists and is also the alleged source of income for many in the communist party, especially the funds arriving from Muslim countries like the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and even Turkey and Iran. Jaleel is also known for his alleged expertise at smuggling gold using the Quran and even palm dates

His name is now synonymous with the green communism that has engulfed the state. As expected, one by one, the communist masters ended up supporting Jaleel and they plan to move the High Court against this order!

Just like the hundreds of government entities that subsist all over Bharat supposedly for the ‘benefit of the minorities’, a shady government-owned non-banking financial company called The Kerala State Minorities Development Finance Corporation Ltd.  (KSMDFC) exists in Kerala. It has a paid-up capital of 100 Crores with funding from the Ministry of Minority Affairs, New Delhi ie. from the center.

Such huge amounts attract unwanted attention since they can be used and misused for various purposes. The rate of interest involved makes sure that you could probably make a neat sum by investing such amounts clandestinely for even small periods, in private banks. That they are even now purchasing five cash counting machines for one of their many offices spread all over Kerala is interesting. They suspiciously lag behind in this digital era.

It is allegedly basically a loan scheme mainly aimed at madrassa teachers and their kin. Any Christian, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, or more importantly, Muslim can approach them for collateral-free, low-interest loans. In the secular setup of our federalism, something so openly anti-Hindu is headed by none other than the Communist Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan. Jaleel was in charge assisted by a dozen ‘Directors’ most of who are Muslims and numerous bureaucrats that were obviously selected as per the whims and fancies of Jaleel.

It also purportedly siphons off central funds to party cadre, ultra Jihadis, and their cronies passing it off as state funds. For things to run smoothly and undetected, you need someone close to you and it is even better if it’s your own brother. Or so Jaleel thought. But unlike in the mafia where such scenes look dynamic, in a democracy, it does not. 

KT Jaleel used his clout as the minister for the welfare of minorities to clandestinely promote his own cousin, KT Adeeb, to the post of General Manager at KSMDFC. Suspiciously, one of the first things that Jaleel did back in 2016 when he became a minister is to write a letter to KSMDFC asking them to change the required qualification for the General Manager post by adding a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (PGDBA) along with the existing B.Tech! 

This was pre-planned to suit Adeeb. The urgency showed also reveals the importance of the job profile in the NBFC. Digging up their loan records might prove helpful for ordinary Muslims which is exactly why the Muslim League is following up in this case.

Things did not pan out as expected when the Adeeb appointment opened up new controversies following which Adeeb ‘stepped down from the position’ back in 2018. In fact, Adeeb’s PGDBA was dubious and not recognized by Kerala Universities. In the backdrop of KSMDFC authorities stating that other candidates who had appeared were not eligible for the post, V K Akbar, the KSMDFC Managing Director dropped a bombshell. 

He said, “The Government Order (GO) states the candidates should have the necessary education qualification from any university and there is no instruction regarding recognition for the courses”. He meant that for contractual appointments course recognition is not necessary or that even someone with fake recognitions could and would be appointed. Such cover-ups speeded Adeeb’s exit.

Jaleel would surely have posted someone else close to him and thought that the controversy is over. It seems he miscalculated. Adeeb’s appointment is exactly the one that the Lok Ayukta has now declared null and void. They have asked Jaleel to step down from his ministerial office with immediate effect. 

It is now clear that with a Minister heading the operations and openly indulging in nepotism, this entity would have surely dealt in favoritism thereby denying any benefits that the center proposed to offer the deserving minorities and distributed the same amongst their cronies notwithstanding their eligibility.

This is where the Lok Ayukta stepped in, something they should have done a long time back, specifically in 2018, when this issue surfaced originally and not when Jaleel is running a caretaker government. For all its logic, the people of Kerala voted on the 6th of this month and the outcome of this order does not dent his possibilities one bit now.

The Chief Minister anyway has three months’ time to decide on the Lok Ayukta recommendation, while his stay in office is only till May 2nd of next month. Jaleel had the option of taking a moral high ground, by appealing in a higher court after relinquishing his ministerial berth. Jaleel and the communists chose not to and have made it clear that he will not step down and will fight the case while retaining the same minister’s chair that he is accused of abusing.

The Lok Ayukta was originally constituted for investigating the allegations of corruption and mal-administration against public servants and for the speedy redressal of grievances of the public! As usual, ultimately it’s the common man who believes in the system that gets fooled. 

The Lok Ayukta made it amply clear that under Section 12(3) of the Kerala Lok Ayukta Act Jaleel should not continue as a Member of the Council of Ministers. This declaration has to be accepted by the Chief Minister under Section 14 of the Act. Once accepted by the Chief Minister, the Minister, in this case, Jaleel, has to resign from the office as per Section 14(2)(i) of the Act.

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