Tirunelveli: Mystery shrouds the missing social activist, Muhilan, who is believed to have been abducted by copper smelter plant Sterlite's supporters in connivance with the state police, while some of his close associates suspect that he might have gone missing over a personal problem.
The noted anti-nuke activist, S P Udayakumar, who has been closely associated with Muhilan since the Idinthakarai struggle against the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP), expressing his concern about Muhilan's life safety, however, too did not rule out that he might have gone into hiding over some personal issue. "I am confused as some of his close friends called me and said that Muhilan hid himself on a personal issue," writes, S P Udayakumar on his Facebook page, posted at 11.50 am on February 20.
Another anti-Sterlite activist, Viyanarasu, who has been associated with Muhilan since his days in the 'Thamilar Thesiya Kootamaippu' of Nedumaran, when asked why he did not issue a statement over the reported missing of Muhilan, said that he was not ready to take any such risk as he had a bad experience long back in 1996, when another anti-Sterlite activist, Tamilmanthan, played a "self missing" drama to create flutter.
Further, recalling an audio of a sleazy talk of Muhilan with a woman during the Idinthakarai struggle, the anti-Sterlite activist added that he was not clear about what happened to him.
Muhilan's wife Poongodi, when contacted by this reporter over phone brushed aside all such suspicions raked against her husband by some of his close associates themselves. She, however said, "some of his co-activists spread such rumours about my husband as they could not stomach his swift popularity." Velan Gunaseelan, another co-activist of Muhilan since 2009, speaking to DC too said that social activists making unwanted statements on the issue was highly regretful.
The Tirunelveli MLA, A L S Lakshmanan along with the local leaders of the DMK and allied parties petitioned the Tirunelveli district collector, demanding the state government to act swift in the issue and find out the social activist, Muhilan. Advocate Hariragavan of an anti-Sterlite movement in Thoothukudi too demanded immediate action to retrieve Muhilan, "lest we will organise another people's demonstration like the one against Sterlite on May 22 last year," Hariragavan warned. Nevertheless the Sterlite administration denied its hand in the activist missing case, stating the video about Thoothukuidi police firing released by Muhilan at a press meet, was not new as much before his press meet at Chennai a week ago, the video has been circulated on social media.