Bengaluru: In what could be a big dent to the CPI(M)’s image in Kerala, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) here Thursday arrested Bineesh Kodiyeri, son of party secretary and strongman Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, in connection with alleged funding of a suspect arrested earlier by the Narcotics Control Bureau for peddling drugs in Bengaluru.
Accompanied by officials, a nervous Bineesh arrived at the Bengaluru Zonal office of the ED in Shanthinagar at 11 am for questioning. Three hours later and after intense questioning, he was taken into custody. Soon after, he was produced before the Bengaluru Sessions Court. Though the ED asked for seven days of custody, the court granted four days.
Sources say that he will be put through some intense questioning in the coming days in the wake of the evidence and statements made by Mohammed Anoop, 38, who was arrested by the NCB on August 22 for allegedly supplying drugs at rave parties in Bengaluru. There is a possibility of the two being questioned simultaneously.
Bineesh had all along maintained that he and Anoop were good friends, and that he had financially helped the latter to start a hotel a few years ago. Sources say that Bineesh and Anoop had other questionable transactions and were constantly in touch with each other. Sources say that the ED will look not just at the financial transactions, but also the telephonic conversations.
Though it is not clear if Bineesh had directly funded the drug business of Anoop, the NCB probe has revealed that the CPM leader’s son had given liberal funds to Anoop to help him start a hotel business in Bengaluru. The big question is whether Bineesh was aware of the drug dealings of Anoop and if he had funded him to further his business in the name of hotel funding.
Bineesh was earlier questioned by the ED on October 6 in Bengaluru. This is the second time he was summoned by the ED in connection with his links to Anoop.
Anoop was part of a gang operated by a woman called Anikha and officials had recovered a large quantity of party drugs from both Anikha and Anoop.
Actor-turned-businessman Bineesh is not new to controversy. On September 9, the ED in Kochi had questioned Bineesh in connection with the ongoing controversial Kerala gold smuggling case. The ED had then registered a case against him under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. It had instructed that the District Registrar General that his properties be frozen, with no transactions to be allowed on them.
In 2013, then home minister and Congress leader Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan had alleged that Bineesh had obtained a passport illegally when his father was serving as Home Minister during the previous LDF regime. He added that there were six criminal cases charged against him for various offences of which five were withdrawn when his father was in office.
His elder brother Binoy is also an equally controversial character. In 2018, cases of cheating were filed against him by the Dubai police after Binoy allegedly failed to pay a tour operator Rs 1.74 crore. Last year, police in Mumbai filed a rape case against him after a 33-year-old woman accused him of sexually assaulting her on the pretext of marriage. The trial is still going on in the case.
India News Online