The police will question Biju Radhakrishnan, prime accused in the solar scam, and his alleged associate and actor, Shalu Menon, together and separately in connection with a cheating case registered against them in the city in March.
The prosecution case is that Biju, posing as the Asia-Pacific head of Swiss Solar, a company which existed only on paper in Kerala, had accepted about Rs. 1 crore from two persons as investments in an “imaginary” wind-energy-harvesting project at Radhapuram in Tamil Nadu. Investigators said they had traced the money trail to Shalu.
They said Biju, who went under different aliases, including R.B. Nair, had impersonated as an IPS officer who had taken voluntary retirement from Central service to work on new and renewable energy projects. The police case was that he had conned a doctor and a businessman here into investing Rs. 25 lakh and Rs. 75 lakh, respectively, in the paper project.
The police said they suspected that Biju had spent at least Rs. 30 lakh from the money on the actor, whom he had befriended early this year.
(The police had told a magistrate court here on Saturday that during the 106 days of their association starting in March, Shalu and Biju had contacted each other on their mobile phones at least 3,000 times).
The police have recorded the statements of persons, including drivers, employed by the two accused. They now want to know if the actor knew of Biju’s “criminal past.”. The police said Biju was involved in the construction of Shalu’s house, refurbishing of her dance schools and a major theatre project to launch a ballet on the mythical Draupadi.
One of the complainants had handed over the Rs. 75 lakh in instalments to Biju in the front of textile shops where Shalu happened to shop on the same day. The police had collected the bills of purchase from these shops and recorded the statements of the staff there. A magistrate court here on Monday remanded Shalu and Biju Radhakrishnan, who was re-arrested in connection with the case here, in police custody for three days.