KOCHI: Swami Raghavendra Thirtha, former deputy pontiff of the Kashi Math Samsthan, was produced before the Ernakulam Chief Judicial Magistrate Court here on Tuesday.
Swami’s followers had gathered at the Ernakulam North railway station and the court complex in large numbers to see him. He was brought from Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh to Kochi, following a production warrant issued by the Chief Judicial Magistrate Court. He was brought to the court under tight security, after a medical checkup. At the court, Swami was seated in the witness box. The CBI, which is probing the case against Swami, submitted the Kerala High Court had directed it to transfer him to the Additional District Court for the trial of a civil case.
Swami’s counsels objected to the CBI’s submission, citing Section-57 of the Kerala Police Act that stipulates missing persons be produced only before the court concerned, and released after recording statement.“Since there is no warrant against Swami in the case pending before the Additional District Court, he need not be transferred there,” it was submitted.
Swami in the statement given before the Chief Judicial Magistrate confirmed he is the person for whom the CBI had been searching, and stated he had left the state as part of a religious mission.Later, Swami was taken to Andhra Pradesh where he is in judicial custody. He will be filing bail petition before a court in Tirupati soon. While leaving the court, Swami greeted his followers, who had gathered on the court premises shouting slogans in support of him.
The CBI has been probing a missing case against Swami since 2015. He was arrested by the Andhra Police two weeks ago in connection with another case.