Main accused in murder of Chandrasekhar identified: police

Normality was partially restored in this town, an enclave of Puducherry, a day after it was rocked by unprecedented violence on Saturday, as 300 policemen, including those from neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, took control of the situation.

All educational institutions remained closed, though a good number of shops were opened in the morning. Employees and workers loyal to the management of Regency Ceramics Limited, the company that was destroyed and looted by mobs on Friday, were fear-stricken. Many either left the town or were unwilling to come out of their houses. The sprawling premises of Regency Ceramics and the Regency Institute of Technology, which were either torched or looted, wore a deserted look. Pieces of ceramic tiles, ash and gutted vehicles lay strewn around. Contract workers of Regency Ceramics, who had been staging protests since January 2, continued their agitation at their camp with a portrait of their leader, M.S. Murali Mohan, who was killed in police action on Friday.

The Yanam police registered five cases of murder, rioting, arson, looting and unlawful assembly and deputed five teams to investigate the violence in which president (O&M) of Regency Ceramics K.C. Chandrasekhar was killed.

“We have already identified the main accused in the murder of Chandrasekhar,” Deputy Inspector-General of Puducherry I.D. Shukla said here. The police had recorded all the developments on video and also collected footage from television channels. To a question, he justified the police action in which Murali Mohan died.

“The workers did not allow the police to shift Murali Mohan to the hospital, but demanded that the doctor be brought to the spot. The workers are also at fault and the police discharged their duty following magisterial orders,” he said in reference to the police firing.

Mr. Shukla said action would be taken against those who looted the company and the college in the aftermath of the police firing. “Our immediate focus is on restoring normality and I will be here for some time to keep stock of the situation,” he said.

He said nine policemen were injured in the stone-throwing. The police took the “bare minimum action” to bring the situation under control and protect public property. Though the Regency Ceramics lodged complaints with the police, it had not mentioned the extent of loss.