Police complaint lodged against woman who says she lost her job after praising Oommen Chandy

Woman accused of forgery and impersonation after she is fired for praising Oommen Chandy.
Lijimol (Left) and Sathi Amma
Lijimol (Left) and Sathi Amma

Kottayam | A day after a woman alleged that she had lost her temporary job because she praised former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, another woman lodged a complaint against her for alleged forgery and impersonation on Wednesday.

Lijimol, a former office-bearer of the local unit of the women empowerment organisation Kudumbashree, filed a complaint with the district police chief, alleging that P O Sathi Amma, who claimed to have lost her job, had gained the temporary employment through forgery.

In the complaint, she also levelled charges against some office-bearers of the local Kudumbashree unit, which recruited Sathi Amma for the job of temporary sweeper at a veterinary centre in Puthuppally here.

Police sources said the complaint was directly submitted to the district police chief.

Later, Lijimol told reporters here that she came to know through the media that 52-year-old Sathi Amma was working in her name by forging documents.

She said that though she was a former office-bearer of the all-woman network, she had neither applied for the job at the veterinary centre in the last few years nor received any salary.

She accused some present office-bearers of the network of providing assistance to Sathi Amma for the alleged forgery and impersonation.

Meanwhile, Chandy Oommen, the Congress party's Puthuppally bypoll candidate and son of late former Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, today visited Sathi Amma and extended all support to her.

He later told reporters that the Left government was curtailing the fundamental rights of citizens and that the woman had lost her job because she exercised her democratic right of free speech.

"There may be ideological differences, but people's means of livelihood should not be denied on the basis of it," he said.

Oommen also urged Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to rethink the matter and reinstate Sathi Amma in service.

Rubbishing the allegations of impersonation and forgery that cropped up against the woman, the leader asked why such charges had not been raised till yesterday.

As the much-awaited Puthuppally bypoll is just days away, a political row has erupted in Kerala over the removal of the woman sweeper from the state-run veterinary centre in the constituency here.

When the opposition Congress came out in support of the woman, who claimed that she lost her job because she had praised former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy in a television programme, the CPI (M)-led LDF government denied the charges, saying there was no politics behind her removal.

Sathi Amma, who had been working as a temporary sweeper for some time at the veterinary centre, said that a reporter of a TV channel had recently taken a soundbite from her for its programme, in which she spoke about the support and assistance that her family had received from Chandy during their time of distress.

The 52-year-old woman also said during the programme that Chandy Oommen, the son of the late Congress stalwart, would win the Puthuppally bypoll .

A newspaper report on Tuesday quoted Sathi Amma as saying that after the TV programme was telecast earlier this week, she was asked not to come for duty anymore by authorities in the animal husbandry department.

Meanwhile, Animal Husbandry Department sources said the woman was recruited through the all-women network Kudumbashree and was removed as her tenure ended.

Animal Husbandry Minister J Chinchu Rani also dismissed allegations of political interference in the removal of Sathi Amma from the temporary job and gave an elaborate explanation claiming that the lady had impersonated another person to get the job.

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