THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Swedish citizen Stefan Asberg, who was forced by the state police on New Year's Eve to discard alcohol bought from a Bevco outlet for not keeping the bill, on Sunday approached the police with an allegation that the property that his company owns in Vellar was encroached on by a local resident.
The 67-year-old had earlier raised the complaint before Labour Minister V Sivankutty when the latter visited him at his house after the police action on New Year's Eve created a huge controversy. It was on the instruction of the minister that Stefan approached the police.
The petition given to the minister said the son of the previous owner of the land was still occupying one portion of the house. The nine-and-a-half cent property was purchased by Stefan for Rs 1.65 crore. The intention of the squatter, named Shibu in the petition, was to get hold of the property after the death of Stefan and his wife or their return to Sweden.
The petition also said Shibu had issued death threats and his wife had warned that she would file a harassment case against Stefan. Fort Assistant Commissioner SS Shaji said though Stefan met him, he did not officially file a complaint. Shaji said since Shibu had filed a civil case regarding the property transaction, the police can take action only after going through the petition.
During the meeting with the assistant commissioner, Stefan also alleged that the squatter was demanding Rs 7 lakh and two cents of land from his property to move out from the house. Stefan later said he wanted protection for his life and property.
He said that he has invested all his savings to purchase the land as he loves Kerala and its culture. "However, if the issue is not resolved, I have no option but to go back to Sweden," he said.
Departmental inquiry against three cops
The police have initiated a departmental inquiry against three cops for blocking Stefan on New Year's Eve. The inquiry is being carried out against a sub-inspector and two civil police officers for allegedly insulting a foreign national.
The inquiry was announced by the city police commissioner despite objections from the Kerala Police Association. Meanwhile, the suspended sub-inspector, TC Shaji, wrote to the chief minister and the state police chief dismissing the allegation that he had forced Stefan to pour out liquor.
Shaji wrote that he was merely implementing the orders of the higher-ups that no one should be allowed to take alcohol to the beach. He claimed he did not insist that Stefan must discard the liquor and the Swede had acted on his own.