Ranganathan was arrested at Pursawalkam after there were charges against him from the residents of Nolambur that he had grabbed land from them by forcefully evicting them.
Ranganathan and Gowri Shankar were charged under various sections of IPC, including 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapons), 387 (putting a person in fear of death), 420 (cheating), 447 (criminal trespass), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) and 506 (II) (criminal intimidation).
Following the complaints from the Annamalai Plot Owners" Association, Nolumbur, the DMK leader, who won election in 2006 from Villivakkam and Venkatesh alias Gowrishankar, his aide were arrested.
The association in their complaint alleged that Ranganathan along with his aide submitted bogus documents and took two-acre land in their possession, which actually belonged to 120 members from the association.
The land purchased in 1994 was approved from Chennai Metropolitan Development (CMDA). In 2008 Gowri Shankar, alleged to be benami of Ranganathan, used fabricated documents to get an ex parte on the property.
Ranganathan's confederates later used fabricated Power of Attorney documents. Murder threats were also made to the plot owners on the grounds that any action to gain the plots would lead to retaliation.