The Kerala High Court on Wednesday said that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan need not face charges in the SNC-Lavalin graft case, The Times of India reported. The court rejected the plea filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation, saying that there was insufficient evidence to try Vijayan in the case.
The high court was hearing a revision petition filed by the agency, challenging a CBI special court’s decision to discharge Vijayan and six others in the 1997 case. While the high court acquitted the chief minister, it has ordered trials against three of the other six accused.
The CBI had alleged that Vijayan and the six others had awarded a contract to Canadian firm SNC-Lavalin to repair three hydroelectric projects in Kerala at a higher cost. The CBI had accused Vijayan, who was the power minister in a coalition government at that time, of swindling the state of Rs 375 crore, reported NDTV.