Godman’s friends in a fix
While the police admit that two days of questioning have led to startling revelations, they are mum on his nexus with the high and mighty. Ramesh Babu reports.india Updated: May 18, 2008 00:38 IST
While Godman Swami Amritha Chaitanya cools his heels in lock-up, many of his high-profile contacts are breaking into a sweat. The mystery of Santosh Madhavan’s, the swami’s real name, nexus with the high and mighty keeps getting murkier.
While the police admit that two days of questioning have led to startling revelations, they are mum on his nexus with the high and mighty.
When the police raided his 16-suite posh ashram in Kochi, they recovered a police uniform among many other things. Initially, they claimed the uniform belonged to circle inspector Ashok Kumar who died in a mishap two years ago. But it appears that there has been no such person in the force over the past two years. There was an inspector Ajaya Kumar who died in March 2006 after falling off his terrace. The deceased police officer’s relatives have already denied the police version. Strangely, insignia and badges were missing from the uniform.
Initially, the police had claimed that the uniform is not more than a month old. If so, how did an officer, who died two years ago, keep a fresh uniform at the ashram?
So, whose uniform was it? Why are the police in a tearing hurry to dismiss political connections of the godman? There are many questions but no answers.
Many have started equating the case with that of the Manichhan payoff case (Hooch baron Manichhan once maintained a diary, recording the money paid to politicians and officials to keep them in good stead. Manichhan was sentenced to life after Kalluvathukkal hooch tragedy. But all those mentioned in his diary walked free).
The swami had reportedly admitted to the rape of minor girls and making pornographic films using them. He told the police that he had installed hidden cameras in his guesthouse and flat. Since many film personalities, businessman and politicians were regulars at his ashram, their involvement can’t be ruled out.
Similarly, chances are there that he blackmailed innocent people using his influence. In the guise of charity, the swami ran many orphanages and girls' homes. He used to sponsor girls belonging to economically weaker sections offering free education and care. Due to his “spiritual background”, poor parents never suspected foul play. And later, fearing his influence, many of his victims suffered in silence.
However, once locals attacked and forcibly closed one of his girls’ homes in Edappally, alleging immoral activities. Nevertheless, he managed to hush up the case.