Police file case against Feroze Kunnamparambil, 3 others for threatening young woman

Police file case against Feroze Kunnamparambil, 3 others for threatening young woman

Kochi: The police will investigate the complaint from a young woman that she was threatened by social activists for not allowing them to handle the large sum of money she had received in her bank account through donations for the treatment of her mother, IG Vijay Sakhare has said.

Varsha, a native of Taliparamba in Kannur, received Rs 1.5 crore in her account after she appealed for financial aid for the treatment of her mother admitted in a private hospital in Ernakulam.

She has alleged that Feroze Kunnamparambil and a few other social activists had threatened her for not letting them handle the money.

An FIR has been registered on the basis of Varsha's complaint and an inquiry has been started, Sakhare said. The police will look into details such as who sent money to the account, he said.

Four social activists — Feroze Kunnamparambil, Sajan Kechery, Salam and Shahid — had helped Varsha raise the money. The Cheranalloor police have registered a case against the four for allegedly threatening her and putting defamatory posts on social media against her when she refused to allow them to handle the money.

The IG said the police will also look into the last financial transactions of the accused. They will also see if there have been any previous complaints against them.

It cannot be called a hawala transaction just because the money came through the banking channel. But the police will collect all the details about the transactions, he said.

The IG said there will also be an investigation into the girl’s complaint that she was badly portrayed and defamed on social media.

593 more COVID-19 cases in Kerala on Saturday, state mulls home treatment  Kerala saw a dip in the COVID-19 cases on Saturday compared to the past four days, but it would be premature to take it as a positive sign for obvious reasons. The state reported 593 more cases on Saturday while the figures in the previous four days were above 600. The tally had even crossed 700 in the past few days. The state reported 204 recoveries on Saturday. This is the second highest tally in the week; Thursday marked 228 recoveries.  Of the latest positive cases, 364 had contracted the disease through contact. While 116 came from abroad, 90 came from other states. Among those infected include 19 health workers and a fire force and Defence Security Corps (DSC) personnel each. With this, the total cases reported from the state touched 11,659 and 6,416 out of them are still active.  "The fact that the number of positive cases has come down today is a matter of relief in itself. However, to know whether it is actually a matter f relief, we will have to  wait for a few days," Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said in his sunset briefing on the COVID situation in the state.  The chief minister himself, in the beginning of the press interaction, had given the reason why the state has to be worried, rather than finding solace in the marginal dip in the latest tally.   Infection through contacts or local transmission in the state has gone above 60 per cent of the confirmed cases. To add to it, the number of cases without known sources of infection is also on the rise in various districts, the chief minister said.    Home treatment  The chief minister said the government was considering experts' proposals to start home treatment for patients whose condition is mild. The government will resort to this method in case the infection rate goes up uncontrollably, the chief minister said.  “Experience from some countries show that asymptomatic patients and those without other serious conditions could be allowed to stay at home for treatment provided there are treatment centres nearby,” the chief minister said.    Thiruvananthapuram continued to record the highest number of positive cases with 173 more people testing positive. The figure is lower compared to the 339 on Thursday and 246 on Friday.  Lockdown will be effective since midnight in the coastal regions which have turned COVID clusters since midnight.   Contact cases are rising in other districts too. Of the 42 cases in Alappuzha, 23 are contact cases. Of the 44 cases in Ernakulam, 38 contracted the virus through contact. Of them, 12 are from the Chellanam cluster and 16 from Aluva cluster. The contact cases include nine health workers working in various hospitals in the district.  In Pathanamthitta, 14 of the 28 new cases contracted the virus through contact.   Reiterating that two regions in Thiruvananthapuram have entered the stage of community transmission, he chief minister said resorting to scientific methods to contain the spread of the virus is a must.   He said the lockdown measures in the Ponnani cluster of Malappuram has been successful. The government's focus now is on first line treatment centres. Those in critical conditions will be shifted to the COVID hospitals while others will be attended to in first-line centres. Private hospitals have also been given permission to treat COVID patients.   He also announced that the first plasma bank for antibody treatment has been opened in Manjeri medical college

Fundraising through crowdsourcing and social media is a recent trend. The accused say that they have raised money similarly in the past to help people.

The IG said the investigation will look into all aspects of the case before proceeding further. No special team has been formed for the case, he said.

In a video, Sajan Kecheri has claimed that Rs 60 lakh of the over Rs 1.5 crore received in Varsha’s bank account was donated by a person as an aid for a charitable trust. However, the police have not been able to confirm this claim.

They said the bank account is currently frozen and, therefore, they could not collect its statement.

The investigation will also look if black money is involved in the case, DCP G Poonguzhali said. Such a large amount getting deposited in the account in a short span of time has given rise to suspicion, she said. The police will examine if there was any other unauthorised involvement in the case, Poonguzhali said.

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