CHENNAI: Mystery shrouds the whereabouts of journalist V Anbazhagan (55), who was picked up by the police here and flown to Coimbatore on Wednesday morning. Though nabbed, he is still kept in an undisclosed location.
The editor of Ullatchi Alasal, a weekly magazine, was wearing a lungi and shirt, when he went missing around 8.30 am from Narasimha Nagar near Poonamallee while he was on his way to buy milk, according to his son V Tamil Sirpi (18).
Coimbatore Superintendent of Police R V Ramya Bharathi later confirmed that Anbazhagan was picked up by the Coimbatore Police on five different counts under the Indian Penal Code for threatening Coimbatore Corporation assistant engineer Parthiban and flown in to Coimbatore, she said.
Asked why he was arrested, the police officer told Express in Coimbatore that Anbazhagan had allegedly demanded Rs 2 lakh from Parthiban. If he failed to pay up, he would write defamatory articles against him.
Parthiban filed a complaint against Anbazhagan under Section 501, 502, 505 and 506 (ii), said Ramya.
Section 501 is about printing matter known to be defamatory, Section 502 is for selling or offering for sale any printed or engraved substance containing defamatory matter, Section 505 is about statement conducing to public mischief and section 506 (ii) is about criminal intimidation.
“My father went in the morning to buy milk. He usually returns in half an hour. On Wednesday, he was not to be seen till 9.15 am. We tried his number, but it was switched off. We went to Poonamalle Police Station and filed a missing person complaint around 11 am. At the police station, we got to know that my father was arrested by the Coimbatore Police,” said Sirpi.
The journalist fraternity stood up as one against the sudden arrest of Anbazhagan. They went to the DGP’s office and gave a petition.
A group of journalists also met Municipal Administration and Water Supply Minister S P Velumani, given the allegation that it was done on the minister’s behest. However, the minister clarified that he was not involved in the incident.