Kerala top cop convicted in Naxal Varghese case

A CBI Special Court here Wednesday found former Inspector General of Police K K Lakshaman guilty of murder in the sensational encounter killing of Naxal leader Varghese 40 years ago.

Kochi: Forty years after Naxal leader A
Varghese was killed, a CBI Special Court here Wednesday found
former IGP K Lakshmana guilty of murder in the encounter
killing case but acquitted former DGP P Vijayan.

Varghese was gunned down by police in the Thiruvenlli
forests in Kerala`s Wayanad district on February 18, 1970 in
what was described as an "encounter" death.

Delivering the judgement, CBI Special court Judge S
Vijay Kumar said the first accused in the case, late CRPF
constable P Ramachandran Nair had murdered Varghese on the
command of Lakshmana, the second accused, who was then Deputy
Superintendent of Police.

The judge convicted Lakshmana, who is in his eighties,
of the offence under Sect 302 (murder) read with Sect 34
(common intention) of IPC but acquitted P Vijayan, giving him
the benefit of doubt.

Lakshmana and Vijayan, who came in a wheelchair, were
present in court when the judgement was read out.

The quantum of sentence will be delivered tomorrow.
Immediately after the verdict, Lakshmana was taken to
the sub-court at Ernakulam.

83-year-old Vijayan, who was SP Kozhikode when the
incident occurred, told reporters he was happy with the
The case made headlines a few years ago after
Ramachandran Nair confessed in 1998 that he had shot Varghese
at the behest of Vijayan and Lakshamana.

"Truth by its very nature does not yield to be kept
hidden for ever. Truth which has been hitherto hidden as
covered by the glitter of golden plate, has by now, though
belatedly, been discovered. Truth triumphs; Truth alone," the
Judge observed.

"For the present purpose no more evidence is needed,
it is proved beyond any shadow of reasonable doubt that
Varghese was brutally killed by the first accused who was a
stooge at the hands of Lakshamana, who on his order brought
about his plan."

"It is thus satisfied that the theory of death of
Varghese in police encounter is an advance defence moulded as
a pretext to commit the crime," the court held.

Available evidence in this case has withstood the test
of time and has convincingly proved the complicity of
Lakshamana. Equally the evidence is also not sufficient to
prove the involvement of third accused, P Vijayan beyond
reasonable doubt, the court said.