India's largest granite exporter, PR Palanichamy, will be questioned by the Madurai Police today after skeletal remains of four persons, including a child, were found from his mining quarry following allegations of human sacrifice.
On 15 September, two of Palanichamy's associates were questioned by the police. The role of a tantrik from Kerala, who is alleged to have led the human sacrifice rituals is also being probed.
Ex PRP employee claims kidnap and assault
- The remains were exhumed following a complaint from M Sevarkodiyan, former driver at PRP Granites, that human sacrifices were carried out at the site by Palanichamy and his associates whenever the firm expanded its business or razed local temples for mining operations.
- Sevarkodiyan claimed he was witness to a human sacrifice in 1998. He reported the matter to the police in 2004, a year after he quit PRP Granites. He alleged that no probe was ever initiated and that he was later kidnapped and assaulted.
Coconuts were tied to the skeletal remains
- The Madurai police will question Palanichamy and his associates. It is expected to take at least a week for forensic experts to analyse the skeletal remains.
- During initial investigations, the police have reportedly found that people who have been allegedly sacrificed were mostly the mentally-ill, and were picked up from the streets. They also found coconuts tied to the skeletal remains.
Who is PR Palanichamy?
- A school drop-out from a village near Andipatti in southern Tamil Nadu, Palanichamy now owns a business empire estimated to be worth over Rs 20,000 crore, spread across the globe.
- He owns acres of land and quarries across the state and in a few other states as well. He has received 14 awards from the President and Prime Minister.