Madras HC stays arrest of Venu Srinivasan for 6 weeks

File photo of Madras High Court.

Chennai: Hearing the anticipatory bail plea of TVS Motor Company’s chairman  Venu Srinivasan today in an idol theft case, the Madras High Court has granted a stay on his arrest for six weeks.

In his bail application, Venu Srinivasan cited a writ plea filed by advocate ‘Elephant’ G Rajendran which refers to the FIR against him. Venu Srinivasan said he understood that an FIR was registered by the Mylapore police and it was later transferred to the CB-CID Idol Wing.

The FIR against the industrialist alleges that he replaced an antique peacock idol with a new one at the Sri Kapaleeswarar temple here and it was registered on the complaint from a devotee Rangarajan NarasimhanRajendran told PTI.

File photo of Kapaleeshwarar Temple.

Asserting that he was innocent, Venu Srinivasan submitted that he had spent around Rs 70 lakh in 2004 from his personal funds for painting and flooring work at the Sri Kapaleeswarar temple.

Though he was appointed a member of the government-constituted Temple Renovation Committee that year, the officials of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department oversaw the renovation work, he said.

Beyond this, Venu Srinivasan said, he has no other connection with the temple except that he is also a devotee of Lord Kapaleeswarar (Shiva). He claimed that as the chairman of the board of trustees of Ranganathaswamy Temple at Tiruchi, he spent nearly Rs 25 crore for its renovation in 2015.

A trust funded by him and his company had undertaken renovation work of over 100 temples in TamilnaduKarnataka and Kerala, he submitted. In view of the serious allegations and the FIR against him, Venu Srinivasan said, he sought anticipatory bail.

According to reports, responding to the petition in court, the Idol Wing had also stated that it did to plan to arrest Venu Srinivasan for now.