Robber’s autobiography lands him in police net

The robber-turned-author, 62-year-old Maniyan Pillai from Kerala, is again in the police net —rightly or wrongly.

Police say several cases are pending against him, but those close to him insist he’s being falsely implicated for making adverse remarks against the police in his autobiography, Thaskaran—Maniyan Pillayude Aatmakadha (Robber: Autobiography of Maniyan Pilla).

Kazhakuttam sub inspector Rajesh Kumar who nabbed Maniyan Pillai, along with two others, said five robbery cases were pending against him at the Kazhakuttam police station alone, besides a number of cases in other stations. He was held after he was “found in suspicious circumstances near the Trippadapuram Dharama Sastha temple,” the sub inspector said.

The arrest comes at a time when filmmaker Babu Janardhanan is planning to the make a film based on the autobiography.

“I am not back-tracking from the project. Jayasurya will play the role of Maniyan Pilli and the shoot will begin by October,” he said. The project is undertaken in association with journalist Indugopan who authored the autobiography for Maniyan Pillai.

In his popular book, Maniyan Pillai tells his eventful life as a robber for about four decades, his encounters with the police, jail terms and his personal life. The book also tells how he, a native of Kollam, emerged as an influential leader in an area in Mysore and was even considered by the Janata Party as a candidate for the Karnataka Assembly polls.

Sources said earlier also he was held by the Attingal police and charged with a robbery case, but was acquitted by the court. He is now not into any unlawful activities, but involved in films and tele-serials. He has already acted in more than 20 films and serials, says his friends.

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