Madurai, June 3: Two months after his arrest on charges of abetting the suicide of a government engineer, former Tamil Nadu Agriculture Minister S S Agri Krishnamurthy was on Wednesday granted conditional bail by the Madras High Court.
Granting the bail, Justice K.Kalyanansundaram of the Court's Madurai bench directed Krishnamurthy to appear before the DSP of CB-CID police in Chennai daily until further orders. [TN: 'Agricultural Engineer who committed suicide was under pressure']
Krishnamurthy was arrested on April 4 in connection with the suicide of senior engineer in the agriculture department S Muthukumaraswamy in Tirunelveli on February 20 last. [Engineer death case: Former Tamil Nadu agriculture minister Krishnamoorthy arrested]
This is the third bail application moved by the former minister in the high court after the earlier two were rejected.
When the matter came up for hearing today, the government advocate opposed the bail plea on the ground that Krishnamurthy's Personal Assistant Pooviah had given a statement that the former minister had pressurized Muthukumarasamy to pay Rs.1.75 lakh each for appointment of seven drivers in the department.
He said the call details made from the numbers of the petitioner and the deceased official had been collected and they interrogated several persons working in the department and outside.
However, the counsel for the petitioner said his client had already spent 60 days in prison.
CB-CID had already recorded his statement and they had nothing more to investigate with him.
Muthukumarasamy killed himself by jumping in front of a train, allegedly because he was under pressure to pay money for the seven drivers recruited by him as per rules.
The death of the official snowballed into a major political row prompting AIADMK to drop Krishnamurthy from the state cabinet and strip him off his party posts before he was arrested.