Security Breach at Cheruthoni dam; Cops in touch with foreign embassy to bring back accused youth

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Idukki: Cops investigating the case of the security breach by a youth from Ottapalam at the Cheruthoni dam are in touch with the foreign embassy to bring back the youth, who is presently working in a Gulf country. Though the investigation officers say that 90 per cent of the investigation in the case has been completed, without questioning the youth, a conclusion could not be reached, they added.

Besides that, Foreigners Regional Registration Offices in the country have been alerted with the aim of taking the accused youth into custody if he tries to reenter India through any of the air or sea ports, sources in the police said.

Keeping all options open, cops are simultaneously trying to persuade his relatives to bring him back home. The security breach occurred on July 22 at 3.15 pm, as per the CCTV visuals, and it was during the routine maintenance work on September 4 held at the dam that the matter came to the attention of the workers.

The youth had placed a total of 11 locks on the bolts used to fix the high mast light and the cables supplying power to it. He also poured liquid on the iron ropes used to raise the shutter of Cheruthoni dam, through which the water from the Idukki reservoir, where the largest power project in the state is situated, is released.

District police chief V U Kurikose said that the investigation officers are weighing all options to bring back the youth and are in touch with his relatives to bring him back at the earliest. “Apart from that, other routine procedures through the foreign embassy are also on. Based on the report of the Idukki additional SP, who conducted the investigation on the alleged security breach at the dam, as many as six cops of the Idukki AR camp have been suspended pending inquiry on Thursday,” he added.

The suspended cops are Rajesh K, Binoj V A, Abdul Gafoor, Surendran P R, Ajesh K G, and Manu O and they were on security duty at the dam on July 22. The CI at Idukki police station oversees the security at the dam. All visitors to the dam pass through metal detectors at the entry points.

An inspection conducted by the Dam Safety Organisation of the KSEB, led by Deputy Chief Engineer P N Biju, on Tuesday, found that all the shutter ropes of the Cheruthoni Dam are functioning properly.

Meanwhile, it is learned from sources that as there is an area in the dam allotted to the Indian Navy for the training of its personnel from Kochi, military intelligence has also started an investigation into the matter.

Sources in the police said that the youth had brought nearly 500 medium-sized seize locks of silver and golden colour and he reached the dam in a rental car. All the unused locks bought by the youth who is believed to be in UAE at present have been taken into custody by the investigation team. The youth had earlier undergone treatment for delusion, however, the cops are looking into the possibility of anyone misusing the youth.

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