He had allegedly helped his relatives in grabbing land

The police have detained ‘Attack' Pandi, a key Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam functionary, and two of his accomplices on charges of land grabbing, cheating and forgery, among other criminal offences, here on Friday.

Following a complaint from Kalpana, wife of Eswaran of Mahal, Commissioner of Police P. Kannappan directed the police to register a case.

Preliminary investigation revealed that Kalpana owned 900 square feet of land in a commercial area opposite Thirumalai Naick Palace. In 2004, she had given the land to Balan on a three-year lease. It is alleged that Balan, along with K. Marimuthu (24) and M. Thiruselvam (25) of Keerathurai, constructed six toilet-cum-bathrooms for ‘pay and use' purpose and dug a borewell to ensure that water was sufficiently available. They also gave a small portion of the land to a person who was engaged in selling compact discs.

When the lease period ended in 2007, Kalpana returned the cash of Rs 2.75 lakh to Balan, but they refused to vacate the place. Whenever she requested them to give back her land, they with the support of ‘Attack' Pandi threatened her, a police officer investigating the case said. Thiruselvam and others ‘suddenly' claimed that they had entered into an agreement with Kalpana's husband. As he had died in 2005, the family was clueless and confused over the claim. Hence, she lodged a complaint stating that the documents, said to be signed by her husband, were forged.

Marimuthu and Thiruselvam, who were summoned for interrogation, told the police that they carried on their business with the support of their relative ‘Attack' Pandi, who was a senior functionary in the DMK. He was also functioning as the Chairman of Agricultural Marketing Committee. Last year, the Teppakulam police had registered a case of kidnap against Pandi on a complaint from a finance company.

When contacted, Mr. Kannappan told The Hindu that the police were in the process of investigating the complaint with all the accused figuring in the case, including ‘Attack' Pandi.