Malayalam director Sanal Kumar Sasidharan was arrested by the Kerala police on Thursday, May 5, near Neyyattinkara in Thiruvananthapuram, following a complaint filed by actor Manju Warrier. The complaint was filed by the actor at Elamakkara police station in Ernakulam district. Following this, a few policemen from Elamakkara reached Thiruvananthapuram in mufti (plainclothes) to arrest the director. He has been booked under Section 354D (Stalking) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The complaint said that Sanal was stalking Manju since August, 2019, and that he had also proposed to her through email, social media, phone, and through friends but she had rejected his advances.
A Facebook Live by Sanal Kumar on Thursday showed him resisting arrest, and claiming that he was being kidnapped by unknown men. In the live video, police officers from Parassala are seen reaching the spot and informing Sanal Kumar that the men in mufti are police and he is being arrested. Sanal was also heard shouting in the video that he was being taken away to be killed, and that he was under the scanner of some mafia for some time now.
For the last few days, the filmmaker has been making various unfounded claims on social media, suggesting that Manju Warrier's life is in danger. A source close to Manju Warrier said that she was irritated and disturbed by the posts and despite warning him not to persist writing about her, he continues to do so.
On May 1, Sanal Kumar first posted on social media accounts claiming that Manju was kidnapped and her life was in danger. Some of the media in Kerala and Tamil Nadu reported it based on his post. However, this later turned out to be false.
Manju has acted in movies like Kayattam directed by Sanal Kumar. It has been almost six months since the director first began alleging that there were threats against his life. He also said that he was not safe in Kerala and he had been hiding in Tamil Nadu.
On May 4, Sanal shot off a letter to the President of India and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India claiming that the law and order situation in the state was deteriorating and his life was under threat as he had raised various issues in the state. â€œI have strong fear that the state is heading towards anarchy, helping a mafia to handle law and order as per its whims and fancies...I am being chased and baseless scandals are being spread against me as I am vocal about this dangerous situation," he claimed.