Solar Scam: Those who ate the salt must drink water

Solar scam was a highly sensational tale of fraud and deception during the tenure of Oommen Chandy-led UDF government in Kerala that dominated the headlines.

The highly despicable tales were signs of the rot that has afflicted our social life. The businesses of a fraudulent solar energy company called Team solar that came up with the concept of installing solar panels for street lights and the unwarranted facilitation extended by the government machinery including the Chief Minister’s office to dupe the clients, forms the crux of this case. Obscene stories linked to a woman Saritha S Nair, the director of the company, spiced up the controversy.  Multi-crore Solar panel scam badly tarnished the reputation of the erstwhile UDF government. Although the CPI (M) and LDF led several protests against the scam, they failed to make it a grant political advancement. The protests then, led to fissures within the LDF and the allies themselves came up with criticisms that it was a compromise-stir. The case that shook both the Fronts has hit the headlines again. Justice Sivarajan Commission that was formed in the wake of the LDF protest, had presented its report before the government a few days ago. The Chief Minister’s announcement on Wednesday of a vigilance probe is what has kicked up a new political storm in Kerala.

The Solar scam filled with tales of fraud are of complex and investigative nature that is tough to describe in such a column. Analysing all the aspects, one could comprehend the following facts. The company Team Solar has been successful in influencing the offices of the Ministers including that of the Chief Minister and accomplish their goals. Sexuality has served as an important factor in these dealings. One can understand from the CM’s statements that Sivarajan Commission has documented such facts in much detail. The government sought legal advice based on the conclusions of the Commission report. The Chief Minister during the press conference on Wednesday announced the related conclusions and legal advices as well as the measures intended to adopt by the government. The government has registered criminal and vigilance cases against the front line Congress leaders including Oommen Chandy, the former Chief Minister and the popular face of the party and further probe. Many of them will have to face legal procedures for criminal offences such as corruption, sexual harassment, rape and bribe. The government has also decided to appoint a special investigation team to look into the matter.

The move of the LDF government is capable of triggering far-reaching consequences in the politics of the Congress in Kerala. The whole front line leadership of the Congress having have to face legal proceedings as per the criminal inquiries will be a heavy blow to them. The Congress sources are making attempts to defend themselves by citing that the government move was politically motivated. They also allege that the findings of the report released on the day of Vengara by-polls was part of the strategy. It’s a reality that any government would try to politically take advantage of a judicial Commission report lying in their hands. But it’s difficult to save oneself from the noose by complaining alone. The government move is legally valid. Therefore the Congress leaders should try to deal with it legally. The solution before them is to prove themselves not guilty before the judiciary.

However, there is a simple truth that one could comprehend when analysing the high profile scam. The tenure of the erstwhile UDF government had been plagued with several wrongdoings. Although it’s a reality that decay accompanies power, the tales related to Solar scam exceeded all boundaries. Therefore those who ate the salt should drink water. The Congress leadership should see the present scenario as an opportunity to cleanse the party’s politics. Merely engaging in political arguments would only make matters worse. 

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