Alappuzha: Father Thomas Peelianickal, executive Director of the Kuttanad Vikasana Samithi, was arrested on June 19 in connection with an agriculture loan scam, the police said.
According to complaints received by the police, Peelianickal had allegedly forged documents of various farmers and availed loans in the name of farmers’ self-help groups.
Six cases were pending against him in this regard, crime branch sources said.
The Kerala High court had earlier granted him anticipatory bail in two cases.
The loans were taken from various banks over the past few years, the sources said.
The fraud came to light after the farmers received recovery notices from banks and lodged complaints with police.
Peelianickal had been summoned by the Crime branch several times for questioning in connection with the case, but had failed to appear, citing health reasons, the sources said.
The Crime Branch Deputy Superintendent of Police took him into custody for questioning from the Samithi office on June19 and later recorded his arrest, they said.
Peelianickal had allegedly obtained loans by setting up self-help groups in different names and forged documents for availing the loans from different banks in Alappuzha.
The samithi is an NGO functioning among farmers in Kuttanad. The priest belongs to the Archdiocese of Changanacherry.
source: Business Standard