Left demands to reopen sex scandal case

Malappuram (Ker), Jan 29 (PTI) IUML leader and formerminister P K Kunhalikutty today came under attack frompolitical rivals, who demanded re-opening of the six-year-old''Icecream parlour'' sex scandal case in the backdrop of chargesmade against him by a close relative.

Left parties and other political outfits today demandedreinvestigation of the case after Kunhalikutty''s co-brother KA Rouf accused him of misusing his position as IndustriesMinister to wriggle out of the infamous ice-cream parlourscandal and sabotaging the case.

Rouf made the charge after Kunhalikutty claimed he wasfacing a threat to his life from his co-brother.

Reacting to the development, state Home Minister KodiyeriBalakrishnan said police had been asked the look into thelegal possibilities of a re-investigation in the case.

"Revelations of Rouf have been taken seriously. Afterdetailed examination of the issue proper steps would betaken," Balakrishnan told reporters at Vatakara.

The case related to allegations that surfaced in late1990s that an icecream parlour in Kozhikode city was run asa cover for luring young women into a sex racket.

The case took a startling turn when a victim claimed thatKunhalikutty had exploited her for sex. She, however, turnedhostile later and ultimately the case was dismissed by thecourt for want of evidence.

Women''s rights campaigner Ajitha, President of "Anveshi"which filed the original case, said Rauf''s confessionsconfirmed that the case had been sabotaged.

She claimed when the case was on, an emissary ofKunhalkikuty had approached her with the plea not to pursue itactively and offered a big sum and a key position in the StateSocial Welfare Board.

Women outfits of the CPI-M and CPI also demandedre-opening of the case and wanted Kunhalikutty to quitpolitics.

As the controversy is haunting IUML, the second largestpartner of Congress-led UDF, state Congress president RameshChennithala said Rouf''s allegations appeared to be part of apolitical conspiracy to weaken the Indian Union Muslim League.

He, however, hoped the issue was not going to mar theprospects of the UDF in the Assembly polls due in May.

Kunhalikutty, who resigned as minister from the UDFGovernment in 2005 after coming under cloud of the scandal,yesterday alleged that Rouf was planning to make an attempt onhis life by hiring goons.

He also claimed that Rouf had sought to blackmail him bymaking fake CDs while Rouf stoutly refuted the charges againsthim.

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