Kozhikode/Kannur: A late-night inspection by the police at Chekkiad in Kozhikode, where the second accused in the Mansoor murder case was found dead a couple of days ago, has raised suspicions over the death.
Ratheesh, 36, a native of Pullookkara in Kannur, was found dead in an isolated area at Chekkiad in Valayam of Kozhikode district on Friday evening, two days after the murder of IUML worker Mansoor at a Koothuparamaba locality in the neighbouring Kannur district.
The post-mortem report points at contusion on the internal organs of Ratheesh, Manorama News reported.
After obtaining the autopsy report, the Superintendent of Police (Vadakara Rural) went to Chekkiad late on Saturday. He examined the tree from which Ratheesh was found hanging and the nearby areas.
The SP's visit to the area soon after receiving the post-mortem report has raised suspicions over the death. The Crime Branch team probing the Mansoor murder case will also visit Chekkiad on Sunday for a detailed inspection.
The United Democratic Front had alleged that he was murdered and hanged from the tree to destroy evidence.
Ratheesh is the second accused in the recent killing of Youth League worker Mansoor in a post-poll clash allegedly between CPM and IUML workers. The police had said Ratheesh, a neighbour of Mansoor, was absconding.
Youth League is a frontal organisation of the IUML or the Indian Union Muslim League, a major party comprising the UDF.
Mansoor, 22, was killed when a group of assailants waylaid him and his brother Muhsin, a UDF poll agent, near their home in Kannur on April 6, the voting day in Kerala. They hurled bombs at the brothers before attacking Mansoor with sharp weapons.
The police had on Thursday handed over the Mansoor murder case to the district Crime Branch.
Meanwhile, the forensic and fingerprint divisions of the police checked the body of Ratheesh. His fingers were examined to know if he had handled bombs.
Valayam police inspector P R Manoj led the inquest on Saturday morning and later the body was shifted to the Kozhikode Medical College Hospital for post-mortem.
Three more held, Muslim League activists booked for violence
The police have arrested three more accused in the Mansoor murder case. With this, four people have been arrested in the case and all of them are activists of the CPI(M) or its youth outfit DYFI.
Fourth accused K K Sreerag, 25; seventh accused Ashwanth, 20; and another accused Aneesh were arrested on Saturday. All three are Pullookkara natives.
Aneesh was not named in the FIR initially. Aneesh was arrested based on the information provided by the first accused Shinos, who is already under arrest.
Apart from those arrested, the FIR includes the names of Sangeeth, Suhail, Sajeevan, Shashi, Sumesh, Jaabir and Nassar. Ratheesh, the second accused and a neighbour of Mansoor, was found hanging on Friday.
The FIR states that all the accused are workers of the CPM or of affiliated outfits and political animosity led to the violence.
The accused include a CPM branch secretary and DYFI regional committee member.
Meanwhile, the police have registered 17 cases against Muslim League workers over the incidents of violence in Chokli and Kolavalloor station limits after Mansoor's murder. The CPM local and branch committee offices, and shops of party sympathisers also came under attack.
Muhsin deposes to Crime Branch
The Crime Branch took the statements of Muhsin, Mansoor’s brother, on Saturday. Muhsin too had suffered injuries in the attack.
The United Democratic Front held a protest rally at Panoor on Saturday, alleging that attempts are being made to scuttle the probe into the case. Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala, Muslim League leader P K Kunhalikutty, and K Sudhakaran, MP, took part in the rally.
Nadapuram Deputy Superintendent of Police P A Shivadas was also at the spot.