Thiruvananthapuram: Former Kerala Police chief TP Senkumar was booked under non-bailable section of the IPC on Friday for allegedly spreading religious hatred through comments made during an interview to a magazine.
In the interview to Samakaalika Malayalam, Senkumar had said that the “rising” birthrate among Muslims in Kerala would alter the state’s demographics and had questioned the rising cases of “love jihad”.
The cyber wing of Crime Branch booked the former director general of police (DGP) under IPC 153(A).
According to police, the case was registered after seeking legal opinion from the Director General of Prosecutions, C Sreedharan Nair.
Police had received eight complaints that accused Senkumar of communal polarisation. DGP Loknath Behra had directed Crime Branch ADGP Nitin Aggarwal to conduct the investigation.
A case has also been registered against the magazine for publishing the controversial interview.
The police will be recording the statements of Senkumar and the magazine reporter.
Senkumar has refuted the allegations against him, claiming his comments had been misreported.
While the BJP and Sangh Parivar outfits backed him, the Left parties and the Muslim League hit out against Senkumar, accusing him of propagating the “saffron agenda”.
Senkumar had also attended a function organised by BJP mouthpiece Janmabumi, triggering speculation that he was planning to join the party. A delegation of BJP leaders, led by MT Ramesh, had also called on him at his residence.
Both the BJP and Senkumar have denied the rumours.
Senkumar had retired on June 30, 55 days after being reinstated.
The incumbent LDF government in the state had removed Senkumar as the DGP two days after it came to power on May 25 last year.
Senkumar was transferred to the Kerala Police Housing and Construction Ltd as its chairman and managing director. Lokanath Behara had replaced him as the new DGP.
The top cop then waged a year-long battle in the Supreme Court against the transfer and on April 24, the SC directed the state government to reinstate the DGP, saying he was transferred by the government "unfairly" and "arbitrarily".
On May 5, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan signed the necessary files to reinstate Senkumar as the state DGP (Law and Order) after the SC dismissed the state's clarification petition on his appointment with costs.
While he was away, Senkumar had made public his dissatisfaction with the way police functioned during his successor Lokanath Behra’s time, such as its “inability” to control political violence.