Kochi: The Crime Branch investigating the death of violinist Balabhaskar on Tuesday asked the Kerala high court permission to take in to custody, Thiruvananthapuram gold smuggling case accused Prakash Thampi and Vishnu Somasundaram. The two accused were former associates of the late musician. 

Prakash and Vishnu are presently in the custody of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in connection with a gold smuggling case.  The DRI had arrested Prakash and Vishnu following the seizure of 25 kg of gold from a passenger at the Thiruvananthapuram airport on May 15.

The duo was taken into custody as late Balabhaskar's family raised doubts over their alleged involvement in the death of the violinist. The Crime Branch has recorded the statement of Balabhaskar's wife Lakshmi, mother-in-law and friend Nandu on Tuesday. Lakshmi told officials that Prakash and Vishnu were part of Balabhaskar's team. However, she said that Prakash was not the manager of the team. 

Post Balabaskar's death, the musician’s father too had requested that the Crime Branch investigate the case, citing financial irregularities.

 Balabhaskar and his family met with an accident at Pallipuram near Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, in the early hours of September 25. While Balabhaskar and his wife, Lakshmi were rushed to a nearby hospital for treatment, their 2-year-old daughter, Tejasvini, unfortunately, died on the spot. Balabhaskar died at the hospital on October 2.

Police found that Arjun, driver of Balabhaskar's car, had been involved in two criminal cases. Arjun allegedly aided a man who was involved in an ATM robbery. At the same time, Arjun denied these allegations by saying that he has no connection with these cases. Arjun told media that he was unaware of their activities.  

It was reported that the Arjun was behind the wheel when the accident occurred on September 25. A few days ago, Balabhaskar’s driver Arjun had told Kerala Police that Balabhaskar himself drove the car on the day of the incident.

Later, Balabhaskar's wife Lakshmi had told police that it was indeed Arjun who had been driving while the accident occurred, and that Balabhaskar was seated in the back seat of the vehicle. Lakshmi further said that she and her daughter were sitting in the front seat with Arjun. 

According to the latest reports, Arjun still maintains that Balabhaskar was driving the car from Thrissur to Thiruvananthapuram after they stopped over to drink juice in Kollam.

Arjun also told media that he knows Balabhaskar for the past 14 years. He also claimed that he is not a driver, and was looking for a job in Thiruvananthapuram.