The Madras High Court on Wednesday rejected a plea seeking extension of an interim protection order of former AIADMK minister M Manikandan, who has been booked on charges of rape. The interim order was granted by Justice R Subramanian on June 3, which prevented the former minister from being arrested till June 9 in connection with the case. However, Justice Abdul Quddhose on Wednesday, looking into the application, rejected the extension plea from the counsel of the AIADMK leader, pointing out that no actual reasons were given by the former Information Technology Minister.
On May 31, a 32-year-old actor had accused the former minister of cheating her after being in a relationship with her for five years. She alleged that Manikandan had promised to marry her and later abandoned her when she got pregnant. She also accused him of forcing her to get an abortion and threatening her family. A formal complaint was lodged with the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Crime Against Women and Children in Chennai. Following this, the Adyar All-Women Police Station registered a case against the former minister under sections 376 (rape), 313 (causing miscarriage without womanâ€™s consent), 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 417 (punishment for cheating) and 506 (i) (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), besides relavant sections of the Information Technology (IT) Act.
The AIADMK leader, who has denied all the allegations, later moved court and got an order preventing his arrest. However, on Wednesday, the judge heard arguments from his counsel and the governmentâ€™s counsel and refused to extend the protection order. The judge denied the extension claiming that no reason has been given by the minister as promised during the plea submission on June 3.
The counsel representing the government pointed out that the custodial investigation of the accused is paramount as the charge levied on him is of a serious nature. The government counsel further stated that extension of interim order should not be granted on any ground as the former AIADMK minister might tamper evidence through his influence.