Police personnel said their hard work and patience cultivating sources close to the suspects over the years had gone unrecognised

Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s announcement of cash reward and one-step promotion to 20 police officers and police personnel involved in the arrest of suspected extremists has caused heartburn among the rank and file in the department who had been in special teams that nabbed the suspects now and in the past.

“We welcome the Chief Minister’s reward to some of our men. But, we expected some kind of recognition for our day-and-night toil in the hunt for those extremists,” said a police personnel from Madurai city special intelligence cell (SIC).

Assistant commissioners of police, Marirajan (SIC) and Karthikeyan (special investigation team-SIT) and constable Sivanesan (SIT) benefited from the Chief Minister’s announcement.

SIC, SIT and special intelligence unit (SIU) personnel said their hard work and patience in cultivating sources over the years, and which helped in the probe, had gone unrecognised.

The probe into the murder of milk-stall owner B. Suresh Kumar here on June 26 was carried out by the Madurai city law and order police, said an intelligence personnel.

“But, the arrests of the two accused in the case — Abdullah and Taufiq — were made by the SIC unit. The murder, thought to be an ordinary motive one, turned out to be the handiwork of suspected extremists. Our hard work led to the startling revelation that the murders of Hindu outfit leaders in Salem and Vellore too were carried out by ‘Police’ Fakruddin, Bilal Malik and Panna Ismail,” he said.

Another intelligence personnel said K. Mariappan of SIT and M. Vijayaperumal of SIU, who have put in over a decade of service collecting intelligence on religious extremists, had risked their lives in the Puttur operation.

“After the gun battle was over, it was Mariappan who dared to enter the suspects’ hideout. He brought them out within minutes and was accompanied by only Vijayaperumal. Shouldn’t such an act of bravery be rewarded?” he said.

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