Chennai: On September 23, city police arrested Thiruvadanai MLA Karunaas from his residence in Saligramam, as he was booked for a controversial statement he made earlier. According to reports, the arrest took place at around 5 am in the morning and a large number of law enforcement officers were deployed at his residence. 

The actor-politician was booked by the Chennai city police on September 20 under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Madras City Police Act, for the speech he made in Chennai, which had gone viral on social media. The statement was delivered at Valluvar Kottam in the city.

Initially, there was speculation that Karunaas was on the run. Speaking to Tamil Nadu reporters in Chennai on Friday(September 21), a day after he was booked, he said, “I have not gone underground and I am not hiding. I am here in Chennai. If such false reports could be circulated against a legislator, it is worrying to think of the problems faced by the common man.”

In a gathering, Karunaas had attacked Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam in his speech. This actor-politician claimed that though he belonged to the 'Thevar' community, his loyalties stood with the Sasikala camp, but many ‘disloyal’ members of his community had crowded to the EPS-OPS camp.

While addressing the Iyers and Nadars-owned media houses, Karunaas also accused a police officer in his speech. He claimed that the cop stopped him from standing next to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister during an event. The comments had triggered off a massive row in the State with the Hindu Makkal Munnani members filing a complaint with Chennai commissioner of police AK Viswanathan.

Speaking to a Tamil news channel, Karunaas said that his intention was not to hurt any community.

“I did not speak against any community. I regret what I said earlier. I spoke in anger over what has happened. If it has hurt anyone, I will make sure that it will not happen again. I only spoke about the demands of my community, and it is not my intention to demean and speak ill about others,” MLA Karunaas said.