Police want SL Minister to appear in Chennai court

Chennai police told a court that it was not sure whether SL Minister Douglas Devanandha is the person who is wanted in connection with a murder case.

Chennai: Chennai police Wednesday told a court here that it was not sure whether Sri Lankan Minister Douglas Devanandha is the same person who is wanted in connection with a murder case and wanted him to appear before the court so that his identity could be established.

This was stated in a counter affidavit to Devananda`s petition seeking exemption from personal appearance before the additional sessions court which had issued non-bailable warrants against him in connection with the 1986 murder of a city resident.

In his petition, Devanandha, wanted in connection with the case, has offered to face proceedings via video conferencing, saying his visit to Tamil Nadu now could create law and order issues.

The counter-affidavit said the first accused in the case Anandan was arrested in 1986. Now the petitioner claims that he is the said Anandan and is presently known as Douglas Devananda and is holding a Constitutional post.

"This respondent is not sure as to the identity of the petitioner... Therefore, unless the petitioner is present before the court and properly identified there is every possibility of miscarriage of justice," the counter submitted.

"The petitioner who has got his name changed has not produced any material on record to prove the same and he being a constitutional member has every duty and responsibility to respect the court of law," it added.

The murder case is related to the death of a city resident in a gunfire from the EPRLF office here in 1986. Devananda, arrested and released on bail then, had been declared a proclaimed offender by a sessions court in 1994 after the former EPRLF leader and the others jumped bail in 1987.