Indian Parliamentarian Surrenders to Court After Being Accused of Murder, Claims He's Innocent
13:57 GMT 11.10.2021 (Updated: 10:39 GMT 19.07.2022)
The senior Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) politician has been on the lam for the last few days, since a murder case was filed against him nearly two weeks ago. The murder charges have created a political furore in the southern state where DMK returned to power just months ago.
Indian Parliamentarian T.R.V. S. Ramesh of the Tamil Nadu state's ruling party Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) surrendered to a court on Monday.
Law enforcement officers have been on the lookout for the federal lawmaker, who has been on the run for over ten days since being accused of murdering a labourer. The allegations were levelled against him by the labourer's family.
The 60-year-old labourer, Govindarasu, was killed during a violent incident at parliamentarian Ramesh's cashew processing unit.
On Monday, the politician rejected the allegations made against him.
In a statement, he said: "I will prove [the] allegations against me are baseless. I surrender to not give room for those who blame my leaders' good governance. I am pained at some parties' slander against [the] DMK".
Govindarasu was allegedly attacked by the parliamentarian, along with other men, for reportedly stealing about 8 kilos of cashews from the processing unit on 19 September. He did not return home that night and was found dead on 20 September on the factory premises.
A police complaint was subsequently filed against the minister as the main accused on 29 September.
As he suffered injuries, the labourer was taken to a police station by his fellow workers. The police instructed the said workers to take him to a hospital.
But his co-workers took the wounded Govindarasu back to the cashew processing unit. He was later found dead there.
In his police complaint, Govindarasu's son called the incident "a clear case of murder".
Over the weekend, the police arrested five workers from the cashew processing unit who were allegedly involved in the violence.
A Tamil Nadu political party -- Paattali Makkal Katchi (PMK), which possesses a strong hold in the region -- has now vowed to get justice for the victim's family.
"We have also filed a complaint of lapse and failure by local police. They shouldn't have entrusted the group to take him to the hospital. The police themselves ought to have done that", said K. Balu, an advocate and spokesperson for the PMK.