Popular television actress and dancer Shalu Menon was arrested on Friday for her alleged links with two accused in the solar panel scam that rocked Kerala state last month.
The solar scam broke out in June following complaints against two main accused - Saritha Nair and live-in partner Biju Radhakrishnan - for financially cheating people promising them to offer solar energy solutions.
Shalu has been under the scanner ever since the scam broke out for her alleged links with Biju, but the actress had managed to evade the police. On Thursday, a Thrissur court ordered the police to arrest Shalu in connection with the solar scam case.
Following court instructions, the cops took Shalu into custody on Friday. The actress had allegedly helped the prime accused Biju to escape by providing her car. According to the police, Biju was also using Shalu's phone while he was evading arrest.
The police recovered Shalu's mobile phone from Biju, who was arrested from Coimbatore a few days ago. A cheating case was registered against him based on two separate complaints filed by a doctor and a businessman, who had complained that Biju had allegedly duped and took huge sums of money from them posing as a bureaucrat working on a personal basis for the Union Ministry for New and Renewable Energy.
Shalu Menon, who was picked up from her home at Changanassery near Kottayam, was taken to nearby Chengannur for questioning in connection with the cheating case. Shalu had claimed her innocence in the scam, but a resident of Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala, had filed a complaint against Shalu claiming that she had accompanied Biju when he took ₹20 lakh from the complainant.
Besides this, phone call details and images of the actress' links with Biju have appeared in the media. Reports also surfaced that Biju offered huge amounts of money to Shalu and also bought expensive gifts to the Kottayam-based actress.
Meanwhile, Kerala Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan has been facing ire from the opposition party for allegedly protecting the actress. The minister had attended the housewarming ceremony of the actress, which led to the opposition claim that the minister is defending the actress by intervening in the police investigation.
However, Radhakrishnan refuted those claims while talking to media persons after inaugurating the renovated Kollam Press Club building on Friday evening. He said that the cops have been given the freedom to carry out a fair investigation.