A guard at the high-profile Kodanad tea estate, which belonged to late Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, was found murdered on a private road inside the estate early on Monday.
The guard had been hacked to death. Reports say that another guard was also found injured at the spot, and that he seemed to have been tied and beaten up.
Reacting to the news, DMK’s MK Stalin has called for a judicial inquiry into the murder of the guard.
According to initial information, the watchman’s body was found near gate number 9 of the estate, which has several entrances and exits. He has been identified as Omkar, a Nepali. A group of unidentified people allegedly came in a car and hacked him to death and injured the other guard. Police is investigating to ascertain if it’s a case of a robbery attempt.
Jayalalithaa's bungalow sits on top of a hill in the estate, and the entire estate is heavily guarded. Police personnel are at the spot and investigating the incident, and the area has been barricaded and cordoned off. Nilgiris district SP Murali Rambha is investigating the case.
After the leader’s death, the estate and assets attached to it are believed to have been transferred to Sasikala, who is presently in a Bengaluru jail serving a sentence for the disproportionate assets case.
The 800-acre tea estate is believed to be worth several hundred crore, and Jayalalithaa had a stake in it. Located 12km from Kotagiri in Nilgiris district, Kodanad had become a tourist hotspot and a destination for the rich to buy property. It was also Jayalalithaa’s favourite summer retreat, and the entire state administration was known to shift to the estate during the summers.
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