SRM Group Chairman TR Pachamuthu has reportedly been arrested by the Crime Branch of the Chennai police. Pachamuthu was summoned by the police for interrogation late on Thursday night. He has been arrested under IPC sections 420 (cheating), 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 34 (common intention). This comes just days after the Madras High Court asked asked the Chennai police if there were any political reasons behind not arresting Pachamuthu. The court had also warned that it may transfer the case to another agency.
This comes after more than 100 students said that they had paid money for obtaining a medical seat in SRM college, but were not admitted. The scam started to unravel after Kollywood producer S Madhan, a close aide of Pachamuthu went missing in May this year. He left behind a note that said he was going to attain Jeeva Samadhi in Varnasi. Attempts to find his whereabouts have failed thus far.
Madhan started out as a college admissions agent, and over the years made his way up to enter the cinema business too. Sources close to him have said that he continued to do college admissions at his office in Vadapalani.
Immediately after his disappearance, an aspiring medical student’s parent Venkatesan, had filed a complaint at the Chennai police commissioner’s office, claiming that he had given Rs 62 lakh to Madhan for a medical seat in SRM college. But since the mark cut-offs were high and National Eligibility Entrance Test was enforced, he asked Madhan to return the money. Madhan returned Rs. 10 lakhs, but is yet to pay him the rest.
The number of complaints against Madhan and Paarivendhar increased, with parents of almost 102 aspiring students complained of fraud amounting to a total of Rs.72 crore.
Soon after, Paarivendhar said that Madhan had created fake documents misusing the group’s name. He denied any connection between the SRM group and Vendhar Movies. Madhan was ousted from the party in February, he said, and added that he had lodged a complaint with the Chennai Police Commisioner and the Kanchipuram SP, stating that SRM Group was not responsible for the illegal activities of Madhan.
It is known that Madhan was very close to Pachamuthu’s family. Although the SRM group maintained that they have no direct links to the production company, Pachamuthu has attended a few cinema events of Vendhar Movies.