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Shankaracharya: Usha denies hand in murder case

Source: PTI
Last updated on: November 30, 2004 19:51 IST
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Usha, a resident of Srirangam in Tamil Nadu wanted in connection with the Sankararaman murder case, on Tuesday presented herself before the police in Kanchipuram.

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Kanchi Shankaracharya Jayendra Saraswati is an accused in the Sankararaman murder case.

Sudha Ramalingam and Arivu Nidhi, the two advocates representing her, said Usha was not hiding or absconding as was made out by the prosecution. "She is very much available here [in Kanchipuram] for any inquiry," they told reporters in Usha's presence.

The advocates said Usha, a cancer patient, was a beneficiary of the Kanchi mutt's "generous help."

During the hearing of the seer's bail plea, the prosecution had told the Madras high court on Monday that the pontiff had extensive telephonic conversations with Usha at Srirangam. "We wanted to interrogate her, but she had made herself scarce and is absconding," Tulsi, senior Supreme Court lawyer appearing for the Tamil Nadu government, had said.

Usha drove from Chennai to the district police office in Kanchipuram and appeared before the additional superintendent of police.

Ramalingam said Usha had to undergo many sittings of chemotherapy and had to be hospitalised several times. Her husband, Narayanan, had approached the Kanchi acharya for medical help.

Meanwhile, Usha told NDTV that she was not aware of the murder of Sankararaman as she never watched TV programmes or read newspapers because of her illness.

Asked about the allegations of money transfers made by the mutt to her, she said "nothing of that sort took place."

Denying that she was "absconding," Usha said in mid-October police came to her house in Srirangam to make some enquiries about her application for a passport.

She was advised by a friend to "come to Dubai for some rest."

"I left Srirangam, where I was living with my aged mother, because I felt humiliated by police visits. Srirangam, being a small place, neighbours will view everything with suspicion," Usha added.

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