2 arrested in Delhi for dragging TN CM in Kodanad murder case
Two days after former Tehelka journalist Mathew Samuel, at a press conference in New Delhi, sought to link Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami in the sensational murder-cum-break-in at late AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa's Kodanad Estate in Nilgiris, the Chennai police on Sunday arrested two accused Sayan and Valayar Manoj, who dragged Palaniswami's name.
In April 2017, a security guard posted outside Jayalalithaa's vast Kodanad Estate bungalow was murdered and a gang of burglars had broken into the house and escaped with some booty. Soon after this, it came to light that the gang was led by Kanakaraj, who had served as driver to Jayalalithaa and her aide V K Sasikala in the past. Except him, the rest of the gang members were from Kerala.
However, within days Kanakaraj was killed in an accident in Tamil Nadu. A day after his death, a vehicle in which Sayan, one of the main accused in the case, was travelling met with an accident and he was grievously injured while his wife and daughter were killed. Few months later, a young man who was operating the CCTV cameras in Kodanad Estate had ended his life.
On Friday, Mathew claimed to have investigated the incident and on the basis of what Sayan and Manoj said. He sought to link the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister to the murder, break-in and subsequent accidents.
Following this, an AIADM IT wing functionary lodged a complaint with the police accusing Mathew and the two accused of deliberately defaming the Chief Minister. The police booked them on charges of “promoting enmity between different groups and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony”.
A special police team on Sunday arrested Sayan and Manoj in Delhi. Mathew in a video claimed that some men in plainclothes forcibly took them away and also in a Facebook post said he stood by his story.
Meanwhile, DMK leader M K Stalin demanded a Special Investigation Team to probe the charges against the Chief Minister. He said the DMK would move the court if no action is taken on his plea. He also sought protection for Mathew, Sayan and Manoj.
Palaniswami had already called the charges baseless.