NEW DELHI 30 JUNE-6 JULY 2013 SUNDAY PAGES 16 B U FFET VO I CES SOCIETY WELLNESS TECHNOLOGY BOOKS ART & CULTURE DESIGN FOOD ASTROLOGY ENTERTAINMENT PUSHPESH PANT G PARTHASARATHY MOHAN DAS MENON YOGESH VAJPEYI MATA AMRITANANDAMAYI YUSUF ARAKKAL MAGANDEEP SINGH ADARSH MATHAM AMMAR ALVI 4 HERITAGE REVIVED, BRICK BY BRICK TRACING RUBY IN RED LIGHT ALLEYS 5 FITNESS IS NOW A QUICK CLICK AWAY TEENS, SLEEP MORE TO EAT LESS JUNK 9 CANCER SURVIVOR HEALS WITH WORDS WHEN A TURBAN DEFINED MILITANCY 10 ART FOR HEART AND CANVAS FOR SOUL THE LIVING LEGEND OF ODISSI 12 BEAUTIFUL ON A BUDGET YOUR PAINT COLOUR SAYS ABOUT YOU C����, SHE W���� New ﬁgures indicate Kerala tops India’s crime charts, including women criminals. They are ruthless and motivated, using sex, blackmail and swindling to achieve their aims. By P Ramdas T he femme fatale is a popular figure in crime fiction. Dashiell Hammett’s voluptuous blondes with beautiful faces and stone cold hearts ready to commit murder with panache and equal ruthlessness; Philip Marlowe’s redheads with revolvers and the hot-blooded murderesses of George Simenon’s works lend a dark glamour to the female criminal. In reality, however, the truth may be more mundane and gory; devoid of the sheen of good fiction. The deceptive gentleness of Kerala—the state of friendly people and emerald fields—is suddenly Ground Zero for the femme fatale with a yen for blood and con. The number of crimes recently exposed in the state where women have emerged as linchpins has shot up to such an extent that it has given birth to an altogether new saying: there is a woman behind every successful crime. She cooks up a storm full of murder, sex, blackmail and intrigue. Saritha S Nair, Kerala’s new Betty the Blackmailer, is the scandalous seductress—in concert with her allegedly murderous beau Biju Radhakrishnan—who has put the political establishment in a bind. The divorced Saritha was a college dropout who grew up in a dysfunctional family. The taste for the good life brought her a like-minded partner in the form of Biju. Together they wove a net of fraud and blackmail, trapping starlets, politicians and prominent businessmen in their net. Her call details to Chief Minister Oomen Chandy’s aides (Chandy would speak to people only through those cell phones) leaked by a TV channel almost threatened to bring the government down. If it was not for the close relationship with some senior luminaries in the Communist Party that led the previous government—an important ex-minister was her “uncle”—Chandy would’ve been cornered into complete humiliation and despair. Saritha’s allure over all those she dealt was most over Biju. Saritha’s is a cheap dime novel story—she married a Dubai-based business- 207 Women serving time in different jails around Kerala, with 56 convicted man, whom she divorced in 2006 to live with Biju. Biju’s wife Reshmi complained to the cops that Saritha wrecked her marriage and her husband abandoned her for Saritha’s sake. Later, Reshmi was found dead in her bathroom. When Biju was arrested from a Coimbatore hotel two weeks ago, he was charged with murdering his wife through poison. Kerala’s Crippen alleged that Saritha was in a relationship with former UDF minister, K B Ganesh Kumar, and shared hotel rooms in Coimbatore where Ganesh had gone for an official function. Earlier, Ganesh’s wife had complained of his philandering accusing Chandy of shielding her. The chief minister finds himself in the unenviable position of being cornered in this scandal, which has provided much grist for Kerala’s rumour mills. their investigations of how she defrauded many using their jointly owned company Team Solar as a front. A survey of the inmates of Viyyur Women Prison showed that 100 per cent of the female prisoners in the prison are from Kerala. Fifteen out of 32 are convicted for murder and three are on trial for murder. Two hundred and seven women are incarcerated in different jails in the state, with 56 convicted criminals and 151 facing trial. Earlier, women caught by the police were found to be only involved in minor crimes like bootlegging and selling a few grams of marijuana. EARLIER WOMEN CAUGHT by the police were found to be only involved in minor crimes like bootlegging and selling marijuana. Some were just prostitutes. Now women are being arrested for serious offences like murders and scams. SHERIN KARANAVAR, plotted her father-in-law’s murder as she feared he would cut her out of his will. A former beauty queen, Sherin got lover Basit Ali to carry out the killing in 2010. Sentenced to life. Another woman, the actor and dancer Shalu Menon, is under the scanner after reports pointing at her role in Saritha’s fraudulent schemes. Police suspect that it was Shalu who helped Biju to leave Kerala the day Saritha was arrested. Shalu and her mother were reportedly in the room next to the one in which Biju was staying as well. Police sources reveal that Saritha was a honey trap for the big wheels in politics and business; blackmailing them after photographing them in compromising positions with her. More revelations involving the state’s power elite are expected to fall out of Saritha’s and Biju’s closets as the police continue Some, like their universal sisters, were just prostitutes—more bathos than blood. The marquee of mayhem is the new show in town—now women criminals in the state are being arrested for serious offences, ranging from brutal murders to multi-crore scams. Incidentally, Kerala tops India’s crime list with 455.8 cases for every 1,00,000 persons according to the National Crime Records Bureau. Ironically, along with Bihar and Chhattisgarh, Kerala tops the states with the highest percentage of women legislators with criminal records. A PRS Legislative Research Turn to Page 2 13 MORE THAN MACHHER JHOL THE RESTAURANT WITH A VIEW LEENA MARIA PAUL, 25, confessed that the lure of a lavish lifestyle and easy money drove her into a life of crime. A well-educated girl who has acted in ﬁlms like Red Chillies, she entered the world of crime with help of her friend Balaji. In custody. SARITHA NAIR, 38, has so far swindled `10 crore from the public with the help of her live-in partner Biju Radhakrishnan. She was the honey trap which lured politicians and businessmen. In custody. 16 IN CONVERSATION WITH RANVEER SINGH SWARA BHASKAR, A RELUCTANT ACTOR
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