Palmolein Scam: CVC Thomas may face trial

P.J. Thomas,Central Vigilance Commissioner and formerly official of that State, is cited as one of the accused, took a new turn on Tuesday, with the Supreme Court paving the way for the commencement of the trial pending in a lower court. With the death of the former Chief Minister, K. Karunakaran, the main accused, the Supreme Court disposed of his appeal as having come to an end. Mr. Thomas has already informed the Supreme Court that he would recuse himself from monitoring the probe into the 2G spectrum scam case, being conducted by the Central Bureau of Investigation, when apprehensions were voiced about his role as the former Telecom Secretary.
The trial court, which will take up the palmolein case on Wednesday, can now proceed to frame charges against the accused. In that event, it may become untenable for Mr. Thomas to continue as CVC. The trial court can also discharge him, holding that no charge is made out against him. At Tuesday's resumed hearing in the Supreme Court, a Bench of Justices Aftab Alam and R.M. Lodha was informed of Karunakaran's death. In a brief order, it said: “The sole appellant died on December 23, 2010. Consequently, the appeal abates, and is dismissed as such.”