NIA takes Swapna Suresh in custody in the alleged gold smuggling case

The infamous Gold smuggling case is taking many twists and turns. The National Investigation Agency again granted custody to the prime accused of Kerala gold smuggling case Swapna Suresh for seven days. Swapna on Tuesday was sent to the NIA's custody till Friday. Meanwhile, Sandeep Nair, another arrested in the gold smuggling case was given bail by the NIA court in Ernakulam. The NIA is exacted to check and counter-check all the statements of Swapna and link them with the statements taken from state Minister KT Jaleel and also those of suspended IAS officer M Sivasankar, the former Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister.

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In a related development, a team of NIA officials arrived at the state-run C-APT (Kerala State Centre for Advanced Printing & Training) office in the state capital on Tuesday and examined a few staff members as it was the centre which was involved in distributing copies of the Quran across the state. Earlier, the ED and the NIA had recorded statements from Minister Jaleel. His name came out in the inquiry after he got packages of the Quran from the UAE to distribute in Kerala. Jaleel, who was Minister-in-charge of the Waqf Board in Kerala, was associated in collecting Ramzan food kits donated by the UAE consulate, for which he had been in contacts with Swapna Suresh.

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Jaleel said he knew Swapna and had agreed to distribute copies of the Quran and the dates brought from the UAE after the Consulate officials asked him if he could help them. Meanwhile, the Congress-led UDF and the BJP-led NDA staged demonstrations across the state, necessitating the withdrawal of the minister. 

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