Chennai: A day after what is seen as an unprecedented move when a group of Idol wing officials complained against special officer IG Pon Manickavel and his autocratic ways, he met presspersons at the high court on Monday and asked for the trust of the people as he wages a lone war.
“All the 208 police personnel including 5 DSPs, 5 ADSPs, 17 Inspectors, 47 sub inspectors and other constables given by the high court is a support force for the Idol Wing to supervise the recovered idols and to coordinate with the Archaeological Survey of India. Even without them, I will do my work. Even without them, I will do my work. Till my last breath I will work, trust me,” said Pon Manickavel, to a question on why his large force was not used.
The police force appointed on July 21, 2017, was to investigate 333 pending idol theft cases.
“In those 400 days, not one FIR was filed by the 21 personnel who complained against me. Then, how can they say that they were pressurised at work?” he asked. “Those who say they are hurt because of work pressure are unfit to be policemen”, he added.
Saying that he believed someone else was behind their complaining, Pon Manickavel said that he pitied them.
“This is an internal matter to be handled within the office. The procedure is that they should email me and I would have them transferred, but I have received no such mail, it is apparent that someone else is behind them,”he said.
Denying allegations of misappropriating case property and having remanded people with insufficient evidence, Pon Manickavel said even if he tried to do that, the court would demand it. “How is it possible to remand someone without proper evidence? Those that complained that I have done so clearly do not understand the law, neither do those who received the complaint.”
Meanwhile, Deputy Superintendent of police Kumar met presspersons and said that he was forced to arrest people without evidence in the theft of nearly 100 bronze idols at the Pandanallur Sri Pasupatheeswarar temple complex in Thanjavur.
“I told him that we cannot arrest without sufficient evidence. He threatened me saying he would suspend me and report me. At that time, he cornered me and made me remand the accused. For 256 days I went on medical leave because of that. Because I could no longer work with him,” he said.
In the idol wing under Pon Manickavel, police officers were not granted the liberty to nab suspects or file chargesheets on their own but they were only involved in remanding and signing the FIR, Kumar added.
This comes after over 20 complaint petitions were submitted to the DGP on December 18. “I am doing my criminal investigations diligently. The senior officer of the Idol Wing is forcing us to add to the case, enemies who are unrelated to the case. This is causing fear and stress to me and prevents me from doing my job,” ADSP Elango had said yesterday....