Sources say he was shunted out for questioning investigation

A senior police officer investigating the Egmore Mercedes accident case has been transferred out of the city.

According to police sources, S. Saravanan, assistant commissioner of police, traffic investigation (west), was transferred to Myladuthurai in Nagapattinam district on Wednesday. He received the order on Thursday.

“He had already requested a transfer. Now he has gone on leave for his son’s wedding. He said he had to distribute invitation cards to friends and relatives,” the source said.

However, some claimed he had been shunted out because he questioned the investigation. “Saravanan is a straightforward and stubborn officer who is not cowed down by challenges,” the source said.

With this transfer, the case has been handed over to Selvamoorthy, assistant commissioner, traffic investigation (north). “He will formally take charge of the case on Saturday,” the police said.

This is the second time a policeman investigating the case has been removed. Earlier, Anna Square traffic investigation inspector, Ravichandran, was suspended on charges of dereliction of duty. He had handled the case on the night of the accident.

Meanwhile, city police teams are still in Kerala looking for the main suspect Shaji Purushothaman. “We are providing all help to our counterparts from Chennai,” said Kerala’s director general of police, K.S. Balasubramanian.

Chennai city police said the teams were concentrating on cellphone signals to zero in on Shaji. “We checked his bank accounts but found no recent withdrawals. He could be using his friends’ debit and credit cards to withdraw money,” said a police source.

Even as the State government remains silent on the question of compensation for the families of Muniraj, who died following the accident, and Subharakshita, who is in hospital with serious injuries, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is said to be collecting money to help them.

According to M. Lenin, committee member of AAP–Tamil Nadu, the State government is usually prompt in providing compensation to families of policemen who die in harness, but, despite the death of a talented boy, it has not reached out to his family.

“Subharakshita has been left disabled by the accident. We will provide money for her hospital treatment as well as for that of Vasu, Muniraj’s brother,” said Mr. Lenin.

He said AAP would also protest against the police for letting Shaji go in the first place. “If the government does not act soon, we will take to the streets and ensure the victims’ families receive compensation,” said Mr. Lenin.

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