The charge is that he usurped 61,600 sq.ft of land meant for a school and playground

Former Higher Education Minister K. Ponmudy was arrested on land grabbing charges at his residence here on Wednesday afternoon.

R.Santhi, secretary of the Thanthai Periyar Transport Corporation Employees' Cooperative Housing Society, was arrested on the charges of colluding with Mr. Ponmudy. The charges levelled against Mr. Ponmudy are that for the sake of his family-run Siga Educational Trust he usurped 61,600 sq.ft of land, valued at Rs 2.65 crore, which was set aside for a school and a playground by the housing society.

Cases were booked against Mr. Ponmudy and Ms. Santhi under Sections 409, 420, 425, 467, 468, 471, 120 (b), 353 and 506 (1) of IPC, amounting to criminal breach of trust, cheating, forging documents, criminal conspiracy and preventing public servants from discharging their duty.

Chairman of the Siga Educational Trust Manivannan and member Saraswathi, mother-in-law of Mr. Ponmudy have also been named in the case. The police have launched a hunt for them.

Mr. Ponmudy said the case was foisted on him on the basis of a complaint filed by a person of dubious credentials.

Keywords: land grab case