Leading Kannada film actor Darshan taken into custody in murder case

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Bengaluru, Jun 11 (PTI) Leading Kannada film actor Darshan Thoogudeepa has been taken into custody in a murder case, Bengaluru Police Commissioner B Dayananda said on Tuesday.

He said Darshan and his aides, who have been detained, are being questioned by police.

"In connection with a murder, a Kannada film actor has been taken into custody and is being questioned," Dayananda briefed reporters here.

The 47-year-old was picked up in connection with the murder of a man, identified as Renuka Swamy, on June 9 in Kamakshipalya area of the city, he said.

After the alleged killing, the body of Swamy, who worked with a pharmacy company and hailed from the district headquarters town of Chitradurga, was dumped into a stormwater drain in Kamakshipalya.

"Based on the recovery of the dead body of an unidentified man and the injuries on his body, a murder case was registered. On the basis of CCTV footage and other technical evidence, the deceased was identified as Renuka Swamy," Dayananda said.

"We have detained the Kannada film actor and his aides and are questioning him. Since the investigation is on I cannot share more details," he said.

When asked whether Darshan has been arrested: he said: "He has been taken into custody and is being questioned. Other procedures will follow after the due process." It is alleged that the deceased had made some derogatory comments against a film actress in a social media post.

Police came to know about the murder after some local residents alerted them.

The body was sent for an autopsy and the forensic report confirmed that he was murdered, police sources said.

Further investigation led to the arrest of some suspects, who spilled the beans, a police official said.

Based on their statement, police detained Darshan from a hotel in Mysuru, sources said.

The police are probing to find out if the actor was directly involved in the murder or was part of the conspiracy, the sources added.

Meanwhile, sources said the actress against whom the deceased had made adverse comments has also been detained for questioning.

Renuka Swamy's parents were inconsolable after learning about the murder.

"He was my only son. Last year he got married. I spoke to him on Saturday only. I want justice," his father Srinivasaiah told reporters at Kamakshipalya police station.

Police have provided tight security at the house of Darshan, who has a huge fan following, at RR Nagar here.

Darshan made his debut as a lead actor in the movie 'Majestic' in 2002.

He featured in several commercially successful films including 'Kariya', 'Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna', 'Kalasipalya', 'Gaja', 'Navagraha', 'Saarathi', 'Bulbul', 'Yajamana', 'Robert' and 'Kaatera'. PTI GMS RS RS

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