Continuing to defend his cabinet colleague, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday said Minister KT Jaleel, who had appeared before the Enforcement Directorate in an alleged FCRA violation case, had committed no wrong and the Congress, the Muslim League and BJP were targeting him due to his "political stand." Jaleel has come under attack from the Congress-led UDF and the BJP, whose workers have been organising state-wide protests since the past five days demanding his resignation after he was questioned by the ED on Friday in connection with the alleged FCRA violation for having accepted consignments of the Holy Quran through diplomatic channels. "The Opposition parties are raising allegations and trying to disrupt the peaceful atmosphere in the state. Those who have previous enmity with Jaleel and cannot reconcile with him are targeting him.
Jaleel is being targeted due to his political stand. We all know what his stand is. He had left one political party and joined the left long back. But they (IUML) did not like it," Vijayan told reporters. He also said the BJP and the Muslim League, both are protesting together against Jaleel and that "they have their own agenda." "Help was sought from Jaleel, by the consulate,and he helped. What crime did he do?" Vijayan said.
While pointing that the Left government was not against protests being carried in a democratic manner, he said those on the warpath now had crossed all limits and the protests by the Opposition parties "violated all COVID protocol." "Our health department has been constantly trying to reduce the number of cases, but seems like these political interferences are being made to increase the number of cases. They are crossing all limits and charging towards the police. This is unfortunate.There are protocols to be followed. People are watching," Vijayan said.
Jaleel had earlier admitted that a consignment containing the Holy Quran had been received from the UAE Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram which a top Customs official had referred to as "prima facie violation of FCRA" (Foreign Contribution Regulation Act). "There is no need for Jaleel to resign as there is no case against him. As part of a probe, some information was sought from him by the investigation agency," Vijayan had told reporters on Monday.