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Karnataka too extracts dose of truth

The revelation that Veerapan was paid a Rs 40-crore ransom to end the Rajkumar kidnap drama two years ago may have had quite a bit to do wit...

Written by Johnson T A | Bangalore |
July 18, 2002

The revelation that Veerapan was paid a Rs 40-crore ransom to end the Rajkumar kidnap drama two years ago may have had quite a bit to do with sodium pentothal, or ‘‘truth serum’’ as it’s better known.

It transpires that the serum, which was used to loosen the tongues of seven accused in the Godhra case, has also been deployed by the Karnataka police on seven to eight occasions to make suspects talk.

Most recently, the serum was administered to a ‘‘close Veerappan associate’’, forensic scientists told The Indian Express.

The police plumped for this controversial method — the UN labels its use as torture — after they were unable to obtain information on Veerappan’s network and the Rajkumar kidnap.

Armed with ‘‘court permission’’ forensic experts administered sodium pentothal to the Veerappan aide in a ‘‘highly controlled and medically supervised hospital environment’’. He reportedly spilt the beans on Nakeeran reporter P Sivasubramaniam, Kolathur Mani and other associates of the smuggler, the exact ransom amount received in return for releasing Rajkumar and the spots where Veerappan had stashed away arms and supplies. Subsequent investigations confirmed this information.

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