Thushar Vellapally, president of a coalition partner of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Party in Kerala, was arrested in the United Arba Emirates in connection with a Rs 19 crore cheque default case, according to media reports on Thursday.
Vellapally was arrested at a hotel in Ajman on Tuesday, Khaleej Times reported, citing a local source associated with his party Bharath Dharma Jana Sena.
Thushar, who unsuccessfully contested as the NDA candidate against Congress leader Rahul Gandhi in the 2019 general elections from Wayanad, was released on bail by Ajman Public Prosecution, but cannot travel without clearing a civil case, Gulf News reported, quoting his uncle K S Vachaspathy.
"We have fulfilled the conditions for securing the bail. But, he will have to clear the civil case for travelling. We are sure that he will be able to do that because this is a clear case of cheating as he had never issued any such cheque in the name of the complainant. This must be a stolen cheque or Thushar's confidante, with whom he used to keep blank cheques when he used to travel might have cheated," Vachaspathy said.
Vellapally was arrested at the hotel where he was invited to discuss matters in connection with the case.
According to the report, Vellapally had issued a cheque of Dh10 million (around Rs 19 crore) ten years ago to a construction firm that had bounced, the Khaleej Times reported, citing sources.
The complaint was registered by a subcontractor from Thrissur, Kerala, who worked for Vellapally-owned Boeing Construction Company LLC that is now defunct.
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday wrote to external affairs minister S Jaishankar, seeking his intervention in the matter.
In the letter, a copy of which was released to the media in Kerala, Vijayan expressed concern about the well being and health of Vellapally.
Vellapally is also the vice president of the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam, a prominent organisation of the backward Ezhava community in Kerala.