A soldier, who a day ago had claimed he was assaulted by six persons near his home in this southern Kerala district and 'PFI' was written on his back, was on Tuesday taken into custody along with his friend for allegedly giving a false statement about the incident, police said.
A senior police officer of the district said that no arrests have been recorded in the case so far and the statements of the soldier -- Shine Kumar -- and his friend were being recorded. "Further action would be taken after verifying the contents of their statements," the officer said.
He also said that the soldier's friend has claimed that Kumar wanted to become famous and that is why this entire act was carried out. The officer further said that the soldier was giving various reasons for making such a false statement and they have to be verified.
Police also recovered the green paint, brush and tape allegedly used in the incident from the friend's home. The soldier's friend told the media that Kumar planned the whole thing to become famous.
Giving details of what allegedly transpired, the friend claimed that Kumar asked him to write 'PFI' on his back and to beat him up. "I was drunk, so I initially wrote DFI, but he (Kumar) said to write PFI. So I made it PFI. Then he asked me to beat him up, but I said I couldn't because I was drunk.
"Then he asked me to drag him on the ground and lay down, but I could not in my intoxicated state. So he asked me to tape his mouth and hands and then to leave. So I did that," the friend claimed.
The soldier in his complaint had claimed that he was allegedly beaten up near his home on Sunday night by six persons and 'PFI' was written on his back with green paint. The alleged incident occurred near his home at Kadakkal here.
The soldier, who is posted in the Indian Army's Electronics and Mechanical Engineers (EME) Corps, had claimed that he saw some persons standing near his home while he was returning on his bike.
On asking them why they were there, they said somebody was lying drunk in the nearby rubber plantation and asked the soldier whether he knew that person, he had said.
He had claimed in his complaint that he accompanied the men to the rubber plantation and on reaching there, someone kicked him from behind and then the assailants tied his hands and beat him up. They then wrote PFI on his back with green pain, he had alleged.
The alleged incident occurred on the last day of the vacation of the soldier hailing from Kerala, police had said and had added that he was set to return to his unit at Jaisalmer in Rajasthan on Monday.
Based on his complaint, police on Monday had lodged an FIR under sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 341 (wrongful restraint) of the IPC was lodged during the day against six identifiable persons.
At the same time police had also said that there were no injuries on the soldier.