Kerala actor abduction: CM cautions against presence of criminals in film industry
Pinarayi Vijayan’s advice came after the main suspect in the incident and an associate were arrested from a court on Thursday when they came to surrender discreetly.india Updated: Mar 02, 2017 19:30 IST
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan cautioned against the possible presence of criminals in the film industry, but asked people to desist from dragging well-known personalities into the controversy over the abduction and molestation of a popular actress last week.
His advice came after the main suspect in the incident and an associate were arrested from a court on Thursday when they came to surrender discreetly.
“Those active in the film industry do not have any underworld connections. But there are people other than these actors and technicians in the industry. Some among them may not be clean,” the chief minister said at a function in Kannur.
The judicial first-class magistrate’s court in Aluva remanded suspected lynchpin Sunil Kumar alias Pulsar Suni and accomplice VP Vijeesh on Friday in judicial custody for two weeks.
Considering the public anger, both were taken to the magistrate’s home under tight security.
The special investigation team probing the case asked for police custody and its plea will be heard on Saturday.
Police said Kumar, who had worked as a driver for filmstars before, planned the abduction and assault to blackmail the actress and extort money. He insisted that no bigwigs were involved in the crime.
The 30-year-old actress, who acted in more than 70 films, was taken hostage by a seven-member gang on the road from Thrissur to Kochi last Friday night when she was returning from a shoot. The gang molested her and took pictures for more than two hours before letting her go.
The kingpin is in custody now, but the offensive pictures and videos were yet to be recovered as police have not found the mobile phone used during the assault.
The incident shocked the nation and pressure mounted on the Left Front government in the state to catch the culprits.
Speculation swirled that the actress’s rivals in the industry hired goons to stage the ghastly incident and take pictures to ruin her career. Also, many artistes came out with “many bad practices and precedents” prevalent in the industry.
The chief minister cautioned against rumours floating after the incident.
“In the Kochi incident, many names are doing the rounds. This is really wrong. Literally some are in a race to name bigwigs,” he said.
But he promised that his government will not allow the mafia to hijack the Malayalam film industry.
Malayalam star Dileep made complained to the police chief that people are linking his name with the incident on social media.
“He is terribly upset after some irresponsible people circulated his name. It is really wrong,” said actor-producer Lal in whose house the actress took refuge after the assault. He was the first to alert police.
First Published: Feb 24, 2017 23:06 IST