Tamil Nadu activist 'spotted' by pal in Tirupati, says his wife

MADURAI/CHENNAI: Hours after a video clip surfaced on Saturday evening showing a man, purported to be missing environmental activist RS Mugilan, being whisked away by police, Mugilan’s wife Poongodi told TOI that her husband had been picked up by the Andhra Pradesh police at Tirupati railway station and that the information had been conveyed to her by Mugilan’s childhood friend Shanmugam who witnessed the incident by chance.
Shanmugam, according to Poongodi, claimed that he saw Mugilan being taken away by Andhra Pradesh police personnel around 7pm even as the activist was raising slogans against the Koodankulam nuclear power plant. Shanmugam, who knows Mugilan from their school days, hails from his neighbourhood at Chennimalai in Erode district. He said he was on his way to Rajahmundry from Erode and had got down at Tirupati to offer prayers to Lord Venkateshwara from the platform when he saw Mugilan being taken away by the police.
Some cops claim it’s Mugilan
Poongodi said, “He said my husband was sporting a well-grown beard. Shanmugam could not follow him as the train started soon. I have passed on whatever information I got to CBCID. We are leaving for Andhra Pradesh to check his whereabouts tomorrow.”
She called up her son Karmugilan, who is doing his masters in Coimbatore, and has also informed people close to the activist. She also informed the CB-CID team which is inquiring into the whereabouts of the activist. Meanwhile, human rights activist from Madurai, Henri Tiphagne, said he got the information from Mugalan’s wife and immediately communicated it to their lawyer, DGP J K Tripathy and DGP Jaffar Sait, who is the chief of CB-CID. “It is up to the civil society to share this news and put pressure on CB-CID to ensure that he is saved from Andhra Pradesh police custody, brought to Tamil Nadu and produced before the high court without wasting a minute,” he said.
Though the state police and the CB-CID police have refused to confirm that the man in the video was Mugilan, a few other police officers, part of the Mugilan investigation case, confirmed it was indeed him going by his voice and facial features.

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