Swami’s pistol goes off in police station, injuring him

May 17th, 2008 - 6:50 pm ICT by admin  


Thiruvananthapuram, May 17 (IANS) A controversial swami in Kerala, who was detained in a police station after he threatened to commit suicide, was injured after his pistol went off inside the station in full view of television cameras. Another bullet whizzed past a reporter. Himaval Maheswara Bhadranandaji, popularly known as ‘Ernakulam Swami’, was taken to Aluva police station Saturday morning from his house in Kochi after he threatened to commit suicide.

The swami had been in the news a few days back after he barged into a media office, reportedly angered by a news report that showed him in poor light.

Following the incident, Bhadranandaji was arrested and let off Thursday but was asked to report to the police station every Monday.

On Saturday, he threatened suicide and was taken to the police station again.

In full view of media personnel present, Bhadranandaji was seen walking inside the police station talking on phone and with the pistol in his hand.

With the pistol pointed at his forehead, the swami started abusing the media and blamed them for for all the negative publicity that he got during the week.

When the police officials tried to stop him, the gun went off and a bullet whizzed past a reporter.

In the ensuing melee, another shot was fired injuring Bhadranandaji. He and the reporter, K. Baby, were taken to a local hospital.

“The police were stopping the media, who had come to see what was happening inside the station. The swami was moving freely with the gun in his hand,” Baby told reporters.

Bhadranandaji, who is in his thirties, is believed to be close to politicians and police officials.

He was also reportedly present at the recent wedding of Communist Party of India-Marxist state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan’s daughter.

Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan has said that the government would probe Bhadranandaji’s links with politicians and police officials.

“The incident at the Aluva police station Saturday, where swami was able to roam around with a pistol in hand inside a police station, is a shame on the police and has created a dent in the image of the government,” said Achuthanandan here.

“We will inquire into the connection this swami has with politicians and police officials,” the chief minister added.

The government has announced a probe into the entire incident by Inspector General of Police Vincent M. Paul.

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