ITDC INDIA EPRESS/ ITDC NEWS The Kerala government on Tuesday removed M. Sivasankar from the post of principal secretary to the chief minister, after his name emerged in a gold smuggling case related to the UAE consulate in Thiruvananthapuram.
Mir Mohammad has been appointed to the post of principal secretary. However, Sivasankar will continue in his post of IT Department secretary.
Both the BJP and Congress had alleged Sivasankar, in his role as IT secretary, was involved in making calls to the customs department to clear a diplomatic package that was smuggling gold. Sivasankar was accused of shielding Swapna Suresh, who is considered to be one of the "kingpins" of the syndicate involved in smuggling of gold into Thiruvananthapuram Airport.
Sivasankar had allegedly played a role in appointing Swapna as operations manager at the Space Park under the IT Department. She was sacked after her name emerged in the smuggling case. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had said Swapna's appointment was without his knowledge. On Monday, the government had sought an explanation from Sivasankar.
Sivasankar was previously criticised for his role in hiring American firm Sprinklr for analysing public data related to COVID-19.