KOCHI: The police on Wednesday informed the Kerala High Court that the investigation team is not in a position to rule out the role of CPM internal political disputes at Thottpally in contributing to the disappearance of K Sajeevan, a CPM member from Thottappally in Alappuzha. The police also sought more time to trace Sajeevan.
The submission was made by the police in response to a habeas corpus petition filed by the wife of Sajeevan seeking a directive to the cops to trace and produce her husband.
Dwijesh S, Inspector of Police, Ambalapuzha police station, informed the court that Sajeevan was found missing on the previous day of the branch committee election of the Poothoppu branch. During the investigation, it was learnt that certain factional elements are working in connection with the CPM branch committee elections. In fact, all the branch secretaries of the local committees under the branch and branch committee members were interrogated. More people had to be interrogated. An in-depth investigation was being conducted by the investigation team.
The police also added that Sajeevan was a supporter of the ongoing protest against the mineral sand transportation from Thottappally estuary by the KMML and he acted as Sathyagrahi one day at the 'samarapanthal'. The police had verified the possibilities of any threat posed by him in the matter. But no adverse elements were found in this regard. The police also added that he had no rivals in local politics or in the community or from the fishing field.
The policy also submitted that it had visited the Thottappally harbour area and taken statements from the fishermen who had been with Sajeevan prior to his disappearance. Sajeevan was seen on the CCTV outside the harbour areas at 1.08 pm on September 29 walking southwards along the panchayat road. The people living in the areas testified that he had moved towards the northern side of the sea mouth and a fishermen fishing at the seamount saw him at that time. Nobody had reported having seen him coming back from the sea mouth areas to the mainland. Besides, an autorickshaw driver told the police that he had picked Sajeevan from Puthennnad at NH and dropped him at Thottappaly spillway south junction at 1.30 p.m. However, the police said the statements of the auto driver were incorrect as nobody saw Sajeevan coming and getting down from the autorickshaw.
The police has recorded the statements of 108 persons so far and more persons had to be questioned. The police, therefore, sought more time to trace the missing person.
Sonu Augustin, counsel for the petitioner, submitted that her husband left home as usual in the early hours of September 29 for fishing. He has not returned home thereafter. Though a complaint was lodged with the Ambalappuzha police on the evening of the same day, no action has been taken. She fears that it is not a case of a missing man but a case of abduction in connection with the dissident movement in the CPM.