Disqualified All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam legislator P Vetrivel on Wednesday moved the Madras High Court for anticipatory bail in a case filed against him for releasing a video purportedly showing late party chief J Jayalalithaa in a hospital bed, PTI reported. The principal sessions court in Chennai had rejected Vetrivel’s bail application on December 22.
Vetrivel’s plea is expected to be listed for hearing on Thursday.
The footage of Jayalalithaa in hospital had been released to the media a day before the RK Nagar bye-poll. On Wednesday, Vetrivel told the Madras High Court that he obtained the clip from sacked AIADMK leader VK Sasikala, who had given it to her nephew TTV Dinakaran “in February/March 2017”, The Hindu reported.
Vetrivel alleged that the case had been filed against him with the intent of getting him booked under non-bailable provisions of the Indian Penal Code. He wondered how the complainant had decided that the video was morphed without an investigation.
The former AIADMK leader also claimed that the complaint was filed “under the instructions of AIADMK ministers, deputy chief minister [O Panneerselvam] and chief minister [Edappadi Palaniswami]”. Vetrivel said that the Commission of Inquiry did not take his statement and its summons did not mention forgery of the video.
The disqualified leader further claimed that the video he released had no connection with the RK Nagar bye-poll, though Sasikala’s nephew Dinakaran went on to win it. Vetrivel claimed he had released the footage because the Election Commission failed to take action against pamphlets the AIADMK had distributed in which they blamed Sasikala for Jayalalithaa’s death.
“Due to political vengeance [and] purposely against the truth, our party general secretary [Sasikala] was continuously blamed for the death of Jayalalithaa,” Vetrivel affidavit reads. “In order to reveal the truth, I had released the footage on December 20, 2017, at the secretariat [in Chennai]”.