Gangster who fled country returns, lands in police net
Police have arrested a notorious gangster who evaded the authorities for the past year by first escaping to Singapore and then moving to Dubai and Kathmandu. Sridhar, 40, a native of Kancheepuram, who is involved in five murders, 11 attempted murders and cases of bootlegging, assault and trespass, was recently charged with threatening the chairman of an educational institution, from whom he demanded Rs 20 lakh.
Investigators said Kancheepuram police registered a case of extortion against Sridhar and launched a manhunt for him after a complaint by Shrivahri Educational Charitable Trust chairman C Radhakarishnan. They learned that he was in hiding in Singapore. By the time the police had issued a lookout notice for him, the hoodlum had flown the coop, first heading from Singapore to Dubai and then to Kathmandu before he quietly returned to India.
"His counsel approached the Madras high court for anticipatory bail in cases pending against him and the judge promised to issue an order granting his request if he surrendered before a judicial magistrate in Kancheepuram," Kancheepuram superintendent of police S Manoharan said. "We put our men on alert, as Sridhar's counsel was confident that he would appear in court and get anticipatory bail," SP Manoharan said.
"As soon as we were informed that he had arrived at the magistrate's court on Wednesday evening, we made arrangements to arrest him in the extortion case once he came out of the court." Sridhar told the police how he gave them the slip and said he was aware that a lookout notice had been issued against him. Investigators said Shrivahri Educational Charitable Trust runs a technical institute in Tiruttani. Apart from chairman Radhakarishnan, it has 15 other trust members.
"Inquiries revealed that some of the trust members insisted that the chairman return a sum of money he invested on behalf of the trust," an investigating officer said. "When Radhakrishnan refused to comply, the trust members approached Sridhar, a gangster in Kancheepuram, to settle the issue." "But Sridhar double-crossed them and asked Radhakrishnan for Rs 20 lakh in return," he said.