THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Two weeks after the tragic suicide of actor Unni Rajan P Dev’s wife Priyanka, in what has become one of the several dowry-related deaths reported in the state over the past few days, the Vattappara police probing the case said Unni’s mother Shantamma is currently absconding. Shantamma, who is the second accused in the case, is the wife of the late actor Rajan P Dev.
Though Unni, the first accused, was arrested and remanded in judicial custody, the police could not arrest Shantamma as she had contracted Covid earlier. Recently, the police searched her house and their relatives’ residences in Angamaly, but could not find her. Nedumangad DySP Umesh Kumar said a special team has been appointed to trace the accused. There are indications that Shantamma has plans to move for anticipatory bail. Meanwhile, Priyanka’s relatives have registered their protest over the delay in Shantamma’s arrest.
Priyanka had died by suicide at her house near Vembayam on May 12 after returning from Angamaly, where she was residing with Unni. Her family subsequently alleged that Unni used to physically harass her for dowry, and that she had lodged a complaint with the police in this regard just a day before her death.
Priyanka’s family had reportedly handed over digital evidence to the police as proof that she was a victim of domestic violence. The police started the probe after her brother approached them with a complaint. Unni’s arrest was recorded after detailed questioning and he has been taken to Thiruvananthapuram.