Chalakkudy (Kerala), March 20:
The BJP’s Kerala unit on Sunday sought a CBI probe into popular actor Kalabhavan Mani’s death as his brother R.L.V. Ramakrishnan demanded a lie-detector test on Mani’s associates often seen with him at his farmhouse.
“It’s two weeks since he died on March 6 and the ongoing probe appears to have reached nowhere. We feel there is something wrong somewhere. We demand a CBI probe to crack the case,” state Bharatiya Janata Party chief Kummanem Rajasekheran told reporters outside Mani’s home here after meeting the bereaved family.
“We are looking into all aspects. It’s too early to come to a conclusion on what caused Mani’s death. Nothing has been confirmed,” Superintendent of Police P.N. Unniraja, who heads the probe team, told reporters at Mani’s farmhouse on Sunday.
On March 18, forensic experts said an insecticide was found in the actor’s body. On Saturday, a search of his 30-acre farmhouse near here in Thrissur district led police to a few bottles – one of them suspected of containing Chlorpyrifos insecticide – that have since been send for forensic examination.
Mani, 45, who acted in 200 films in Malayalam and other languages, was admitted to a hospital in Kochi on March 4. Said to be suffering from a liver ailment, he died two days later.
After his death, hospital authorities reported the presence of a chemical in the body, leading to speculation that he may not have died a natural death.
Police have now asked the regional laboratory at Kochi to provide a detailed report on the quantity of insecticide and other details.
Likewise, a full autopsy report from the state-owned Thrissur Medical College and Hospital is also awaited.
Police have questioned more than 140 people. Three of Mani’s close friends — Arun, Vipin and Murugan who were often spotted at his outhouse — have been called in for questioning by police a few times.
The probe team is now looking into the bank accounts of Mani as well as these three. (IANS)