Thiruvananthapuram: Sixteen years have passed but the Suryanelli rape case continues to shadow PJ Kurien, the deputy speaker of the Rajya Sabha. Troubles resurfaced for the Kerala Congressman after the rape survivor sent a letter to the Supreme Court last week, asking for a review of the apex court's order quashing all charges against Kurien.
Back home, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy was the first to defend Kurien. Chandy said, "The allegations against Kurien is not new and it was cleared by the Supreme Court years ago. It is rather sad and unfortunate to attack someone who has been found innocent by the courts.:
The Chief Minister's confidence stems from the fact that though Kurien was probed thrice by three different officers, during the term of the CPM led-LDF, nothing emerged. But the CPM was quick to hit back. Leader of Opposition VS Achuthananthan said, "There should be a complete re -investigation in to Kurien's role in the case. He should also step down from his post till his name is cleared."
Meanwhile, there's confusion among police officers who were part of the probe team. While Siby Mathews, who led the probe team, says there was no evidence to nail Kurien, his colleague KK Joshua countered it, by saying not enough was done.
The man at the centre of the storm, has rubbished all fresh allegations. Kurien said, "I don't think I need to answer these allegations again. I will answer when its needed. Media should go through the judgement before forming an opinion again."
All eyes are now on the Kerala High Court on what decision it takes on PJ Kurien because in spite of the all the noises that is now doing the rounds to make Kurien an accused, the final call will rest with the same judiciary which once found him completely innocent.