KOCHI: Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said the Kerala police played a crucial role in the arrest of suspected Maoist leader Roopesh and four others in Coimbatore.
He was speaking to reporters after holding a meeting on the increasing drug menace in Kochi, on Thursday.
According to Ramesh, the arrest of Roopesh and others was a significant step towards neutralising Maoist activities in the State. “It was a joint effort by the police forces of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh that led to the arrests. Roopesh and team were planning to launch phase-I of the ‘Maoist Politico-military Campaign in Kerala. As part of the campaign, various activities, including attack on various urban establishments, were planned. Their motive was to create anarchy and fear among the public. But, the police successfully thwarted their attempts. Maoists who were active in the urban areas were arrested. Several suspected activists have been identified, and are under surveillance,” he said.
The Minister said that 18 cases of Maoist activities had been registered in the State, including those against Roopesh. “A directive has been issued to the police to take follow-up action in the wake of the arrest of Roopesh and others. ADGP (Crime) S Ananthakrishnan, South Zone ADGP K Padmakumar and North Zone ADGP N Sankar Reddy have been asked to supervise the follow-up action. Arrangements have also been made to take Roopesh and Shyna into the custody of Kerala police. Once they are sent back to judicial custody, after police custody in the Q Branch of Tamil Nadu, we will approach the court seeking their custody,” he said, adding that a section of the media was glorifying Roopesh and his activities, threatening national security.
On the probe carried out by the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) in the bribery allegation against K Babu, Ramesh Chennithala said that VACB DySP M N Ramesh, who has clean service history, was entrusted to carry out the investigation. “The Department has been given independent power to conduct the investigation without any political pressure,” he said, adding that proper action would be taken against IG T J Jose on the basis of the investigation report.