Peoples Democratic Party leader Abdul Nasar Madani, who is on the radar of the Karnataka police for his alleged role in the Bengaluru blasts case, is likely to surrender before he is arrested.
A member of the Karnataka police team told rediff.com that when the police approached Madani in Kerala to arrest him, he requested that he should be allowed to surrender in stead.
Madani reportedly told the police not to arrest him, as it would lead to a law and order problem.
"Let me surrender instead and I am ready to cooperate fully with the investigation. However, don't expect me to surrender immediately, I need some time before I can do that," the source said quoting Madani's words to the police.
The Bangalore police had been reportedly waiting for a formal nod on Wednesday morning from the Karnataka home minister to arrest Madani. A police team led by circle inspector Siddappa reached Kollam on Tuesday afternoon, fuelling speculation that Madani's arrest was imminent. His anticipatory bail plea was rejected by Karnataka high court last week.
Madani had earlier told mediapersons that he would co-operate with the police in deference to the judiciary but would continue his legal battle to prove his innocence.
Home Minister Dr V S Acharya however told rediff.com that he had no information on Madani's request to surrender.
"I am aware that a (police) team is there, but whether they carry out the arrest or not does not come under my purview. Don't be under the impression that the home minister has to approve the arrest. The police work under the provisions of the Criminal Code of Procedure and the Indian Penal Code and they are empowered to take action.
"The commissioner of police and director general of police are competent authorities to take such a decision," he said.
The Bengaluru police is concerned that Madani's arrest may lead to a law and order situation. The police is, hence, pushing hard for Madani's surrender so that they could bring him to Bengaluru without any resistance.
The Kerala police has allayed fears of a law and order problem and has asked the Karnataka team to push for a surrender.
The state police was also seized of the possibility of radical outfits like the Popular Front of India, under the scanner for its role in chopping off the hand of a college lecturer, exploiting the situation to fan communal trouble and lawlessness.
Security across the state, already tight in view of the visit of President Pratibha Patil later this week and Independence Day, has been further strengthened in the wake of the developments concerning the PDP leader, sources said.
Meanwhile, Kerala Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan told reporters that it was for the Karnataka police to decide the time and manner in which Madani's arrest has to take place. The Kerala police would provide necessary support for the arrest, Balakrishnan said.
Inputs from agencies