No evidence against police officers for involvement in activities of fake antiquities dealer Monson Mavungal: Crime Branch tells Kerala High Court

The investigation conducted so far has not brought out anything to prove the involvement of a former Deputy Inspector General and two inspectors of police in the cheating indulged in by fake antiquities dealer Monson Mavungal. However, disciplinary action against these officers who had some sort of connection with Monson are on, according to a statement filed by the Crime Branch (CB) in the High Court.

The statement was filed in response to a petition alleging an improper probe against the police officers.

The CB said that in fact, disciplinary proceedings had been initiated against G. Lakshman, Inspector General of Police, Social Policing and Traffic, for his association with Monson and he is still under suspension. P. Sreekumar, former Inspector of Police, Cherthala, is also under suspension pending disciplinary inquiry for his association with Monson. Disciplinary proceedings are on against A. Ananthalal, Inspector of Police, State Crime Records Bureau (SCRB), Thiruvananthapuram, and A.B. Vibin, Inspector of Police, Meppadi, Wayanad, for official misconduct by way of borrowing money from Monson.

The inquiry against S. Surendran, Deputy Inspector General of Police (Retired), had revealed that he and his family were keeping close contact with Monson. However, no evidence had been received so far to implicate him in the cheating cases.

The CB also dismissed the allegation that separate police protection was provided for the house of Monson. The Station House Officer of the Ernakulam North police had arranged a “point book” in front of the house of Monson to facilitate police patrol to put their signature in it when they passed through the area. This was a usual mechanism of police surveillance as provided in the standing orders. As for the allegation against retired DIG S. Surendran, none of the witnesses had stated that ₹15 lakh had been transported to the residence of Mr. Surendran.

The CB said the allegation that the fake documents showing a deposit of crores of rupees in a bank account of Monson were fabricated with the assistance of police officers Mr. Lakshman, Mr. Surendran and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president K. Sudhakaran required further investigation. The allegation of handing over ₹25 lakh to Monson in the presence of Mr. Sudhakaran is under the purview of the investigation. Mr. Sudhakaran is yet to be questioned.

The apprehension of the petitioner that the investigation agency was trying to hush up the case was misconceived, the CB said.

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Printable version | Aug 27, 2022 10:19:45 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/no-evidence-against-police-officers-for-involvement-in-activities-of-fake-antiquities-dealer-monson-mavungal-crime-branch-tells-kerala-high-court/article65750645.ece