Kerala Cong chief Sudhakaran arrested by Crime Branch; released on bail
Kochi: The Crime Branch of Kerala Police on Friday night arrested state Congress chief and Kannur Lok Sabha member K. Sudhakaran in connection with a cheating case involving now-jailed fake antique dealer Monson Mavunkal. Sudhakaran was later released on bail.
The Congress reacted to the development by saying that the day will go down as a black day in the history of Kerala’s democratic traditions as “this is nothing but an act of vengeance arising out of a deep-rooted conspiracy”.
Sudhakaran is the second accused in the case.
Earlier this week, the Kerala High Court had ruled that no action should be taken against Sudhakaran in the case as it granted him two weeks’ interim anticipatory bail on his plea.
The court, while granting his request, asked him to cooperate with the probe and also ruled that in case an arrest is made, he should be given bail on a surety bond of Rs 50,000.
Sudhakaran is facing charges in a cheating case involving Monson Mavunkal. It is alleged that a person named Anoop had paid Rs 25 lakh to Mavunkal at the Congress leader’s Kochi office in 2018.
When the money was being handed over, Sudhakaran was also present and he allegedly took Rs 10 lakh, promising to do a favour to the person.
The Crime Branch named Sudhakaran as the second accused in the case and asked him to appear before the probe team on June 14, but he expressed his unavailability and said that he will appear before them on June 23.
He was arrested after seven hours of interrogation before being released on bail.
After his release, Sudhakaran told reporters that he has full confidence in the judiciary.
“I know I have not done anything wrong, and there is no evidence to make me an accused. I will fight this case in the court now,” he said.
Incidentally, the arrest took place after the police had informed the court that at the moment, they have no plans to arrest Sudhakaran.
All along, Sudhakaran had contended that there was no allegation against him in the FIR, which was registered in 2021 based on a complaint received in 2018, and it was only much later that his name was included.
“The arrest of Sudhakaran was part of a deep-rooted conspiracy and will go down as a black day in the history of Kerala’s democratic traditions. The state government cannot tolerate criticism, so all the critiques are dealt in this manner. But we are not going to get cowed down. The Pinarayi Vijayan government is now living in perpetual fear,” said leader of opposition V.D. Satheesan.