The NIA has arrested an absconding accused in a 2010 case in which members of the Popular Front of India (PFI) are accused of attempting to kill a Malayalam professor in Idukki district of Kerala. They allegedly felt he had included derogatory remarks against Prophet Mohammed in a question paper and attacked him, chopping off the professor’s right hand with an axe.
Accused T P Subair, a resident of West Veliathunadu in Ernakulam, was arrested by the NIA on Wednesday night. He was produced before a special NIA court in Ernakulam on Thursday and remanded in judicial custody till November 14.
The victim, T J Joseph, was a Malayalam professor at the Newman College. According to the NIA, the accused — active members of the PFI — felt a question in the paper set by Joseph had some derogatory remarks against Prophet Mohammed. They conspired to attack the professor.
At 8 pm on July 4, 2010, when Joseph was driving home from Church with his sister and mother, his Wagon R was intercepted by the accused, who were in a Maruti Omni van, near his residence at Hostelpady in Muvattupuzha village. According to the chargesheet filed by the NIA earlier, the accused allegedly smashed the windshield of Joseph’s car, pulled him out and attacked him with knives and a small axe and tried to kill him. One of the accused chopped off Joseph’s right hand and allegedly declared, “This hand which insults Islam will not be used in future.”
The accused allegedly hurled country-made bombs to prevent others from rescuing Joseph, the chargesheet said. The hand was allegedly thrown into a nearby compound and the accused fled the spot.
The NIA took over the case from the Muvattupuzha Police Station in Ernakulum and filed a fresh FIR on April 4, 2011. A first Supplementary chargesheet was filed by the NIA against nine accused on January 18, 2013 and a second supplementary chargesheet against another accused on April 12, 2013. The trial of the case is underway against 37 chargesheeted accused and further investigation against 16 absconding accused is in progress.