CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin, after a review meeting on the law and order situation in the State on Saturday, ordered DGP C Sylendra Babu and Chennai Police Commissioner Shankar Jiwal to submit a detailed report on the growing murder menace in Chennai and across Tamil Nadu.
The direction came a day after opposition leader Edappadi K Palaniswami attacked the DMK government over the alleged spike in crimes and lawlessness. BJP leader Annamalai and AIADMK leader O Pannerselvam, too, had attacked the DMK government last week over the law and order situation in Tamil Nadu.
Chairing a meeting attended by Chief Secretary V Irai Anbu, Home Secretary SK Prabhakar, and senior police officials in Chennai, the chief minister said the old-school method of tracking released prisoners must be followed scrupulously as repeat offenders are the ones who are often involved in murders. Data on crimes and steps taken to prevent and resolve them were presented by officials at the meeting.
"Chennai witnessed 10 murders in May. Only three were related to previous enmity, and a history-sheeter was involved in just one case. The rest were due to family issues. Every year, at least 130-140 murders happen in Chennai. There has been a 25 per cent reduction now, and the police are trying to reduce it further," city top cop Shankar Jiwal said, dismissing Palaniswami's allegations.
It is important to consider the motive behind a murder, he said, adding that most murders in Chennai are related to family issues. It is a serious crime if an innocent person is murdered in a gang fight, and this is what the Chennai police are focusing on, he said.
"We are now undertaking an operation in which police personnel have been told to trace suspects with a history of enmity, so crimes can be prevented. We are also regularly detaining notorious suspects under the Goondas Act," said Jiwal.
He added that the police are constantly in touch with the security deputy commissioner of the high court to ensure people accused in over 20-25 cases get convicted. When asked about the allegations that the State government is pressuring the police department, Jiwal said there is no pressure from the State government.
The two-hour meeting, held against the backdrop of the custodial deaths of Vignesh in Chennai, and Thangamani in Tiruvannamalai, also witnessed discussions on drug abuse, and ways to change the attitude and behaviour of the police towards the public.