THRISSUR: The police suspect the involvement of a prominent Kochi-based advocate in the murder of a real estate broker in Chalakkudy the other day. Angamaly native Rajeev, 46, son of Appu, was found dead in a vacant house at Pariyaram. He had taken 20 acres of land on lease at Thavalakuzhi and was residing in a small house there. The caretaker of the farm, who noticed strangers moving about in the house, had informed the people. Later, the mobile and bike of Rajeev were found abandoned on the road. Following the information given to the police, they found the body in the house.
Rajeev’s son Akhil too had lodged a missing person complaint with the Chalakkudy police. The police suspect he was abducted in an autorickshaw and done to death in the house near a convent. While one of the accused was taken into custody from Chalakkudy, the three others held in the case are from Muringur.
The police said the arrested suspects revealed a leading advocate had given them the quotation to kill Rajeev. It was based on their statements the advocate’s involvement in the case emerged. Officers believe money transaction for land deals could have led to the murder. Rajeev did not return the money which was given in advance for purchasing land.
This might have led to the differences, eventually leading to his murder, they said. Meanwhile, the name of High Court lawyer C P Udayabhanu has emerged in the case. The victim had lodged a complaint with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan against Udayabhanu which alleged he faced death threats from Udayabhanu. The victim had also complained to the DGP and the High Court seeking protection following threats from the advocate.
SIT to probe
Thrissur Rural SP Yatish Chandra told reporters a special investigation team(SIT) had been formed to investigate the case. The team headed by DySP Shamsudhin will also include DySP Omanakuttan and Puthukad CI. The team will receive intelligence inputs from the special crime squad and a team of cyber experts will help in the probe. He said a manhunt is on to track down the two remaining accused who have evaded arrest so far. On the lawyer’s alleged involvement in the case, he said several persons are under the scanner and it is too early to name anyone.
The arrest of the key accused in the case has helped to fast-track the probe which will also cover the charges levelled against the advocate. Chandra, further, said the victim had been engaged in real estate business on a major scale and row over land deal could have cost him his life. Rajeev also handled huge sums of money as part of the business and all these will be looked into, he said.