Welcoming the Supreme Court's verdict quashing P J Thomas' appointment as chief vigilance commissioner, Kerala Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan demanded the resignation of those "responsible" for his posting including Home Minister P Chidambaram.
"Thomas was posted by the Union Government ignoring the objection raised by the opposition and without adhering to existing rules. Union Home Minister P Chidambaram should resign," he told reporters. When it was pointed out that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh headed the panel that chose the CVC, Achuthanandan modified his answer saying "I meant those responsible for the posting."
To a question on Thomas's appointment as state chief secretary during his tenure, Achuthanandan said he took the decision based on the request from 27 IAS officers who opined that his services were required for the state. "I chose not to reject their plea," he said. "However, I continued to pursue the 1992 palmolein import graft case in which Thomas was an accused and am still doing it," Achuthanandan said.
The palmolein case related to alleged corruption in importing palmolein from Malaysia, which caused a loss of Rs 2.09 crore to the state in 1991-92 when late Congress leader K Karunarakan was the chief minister and Thomas the food secretary.