Senior CPI-M leader MM Mani was on Wednesday arrested for declining to turn up for a polygraph test as part of the probe in connection with his controversial speech in which he said his party had in the past eliminated some of its political rivals in Idukki district.
Mani was arrested from his house at Kunnhithanni near here and was taken to the police station at Nedumkandam.He would be produced before the magistrate later in the day after medical examination, police sources said.
The special investigation team probing the case had last week served a notice to Mani seeking to know whether he was prepared to appear for the polygraph test by today. Citing legal and medical grounds, Mani had informed the police that he would not comply with the demand of the investigators.
CPI(M) has called a hartal in Idukki district,where Mani was party secretary for long, tomorrow to protest his arrest.
Police had registered a criminal case against Mani and two other party activists and started a fresh probe into the murder of an INTUC activist in the district 30 years ago in the light of Mani's speech.
While addressing a public meeting at Manakkad near Thodupuzha in the district a few months ago, Mani said his party had in the 1980s drawn up a list of political rivals to be eliminated and executed that, which sparked a raging controversy within and outside the state.
With Mani's speech causing deep embarrassment to even the central leadership of the CPI(M), he was removed as the CPI-M Idukki district secretary and suspended from the state committee in July last.