NCP's Saseendran to become Kerala minister again

Days after being acquitted by a court of sexual harassment charges, over which he was forced to quit the LDF ministry last year, NCP leader A K Saseendran would be sworn in as a Kerala minister tomorrow.

Saseendran would be administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor P Sathasivam tomorrow at 5 pm, Raj Bhavan sources said.

He had resigned 11 months ago after a Malayalam TV channel released an audio clipping of a purported conversation of him with a woman.

A case was registered against Saseendran after the woman filed a complaint, in which she stated that he had misbehaved with her when she met him for an interview at his office.

The chief judicial magistrate's court here had last week acquitted Saseendran of the charges holding that no case had been made out against him that warranted conviction.

Challenging Saseendran's acquittal, a woman today moved the Kerala High Court.

After the harassment charge surfaced, the government appointed Justice P S Antony commission to probe into the matter.

The panel, in its report last year, stated that it could not ascertain the authenticity of the purported voice clip of Saseendran.

Saseendran resigned as minister in March last year and Thomas Chandy, the other MLA of the party, replaced him as the transport minister. However, Chandy also had to resign in November after allegations of land encroachment surfaced against him.

The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) state leadership had then taken a decision that whoever comes clean of the charges against them first would become the minister again.

The CEO of the TV channel and four journalists were arrested in connection with the 'sleaze audio' and are now out on bail.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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