A Tamil Nadu-based freelance cartoonist was arrested on Sunday for drawing an ‘obscene’ cartoon which allegedly defamed the chief minister, the Tirunelveli collector and the city commissioner of police.

The 36-year-old G Bala was arrested from Chennai for his caricature in which he slammed the chief minister and district administration for not acting against loan sharks of the state.

The cartoon which was put up on his Facebook timeline on October 30 was created in the backdrop of the recent self-immolation deaths in Tirunelveli. Four of a daily labourer’s family had committed suicide as they were allegedly being pressurised by money lenders, reports The Hindu.

According to an Indian Today report, Isakimuthu and his wife Subbulakshmi were harassed by a money lender even after they paid their dues. Frustrated with the police inaction, the couple had reportedly visited the collector’s office six times for help. They eventually committed suicide along with their daughters aged two and four.

Bala was arrested after a complaint was filed by Tirunelveli collector Sandeep Nanduri for the “derogatory, demeaning and malicious cartoon”.  A case under Sections 67 of IT Act and 501 of IPC was filed against him.

b’The photo of the self immolation incident that went viral’

“In the cartoon, he (Bala) depicts the burning body of a baby which is watched by 3 persons without clothes and who are identified as Nellai police commissioner, Nellai Collector and Chief Minister. The three persons are depicted as naked and carrying currency notes which are used to cover their private parts. This highly demeaning cartoon shows the government officers in poor light and also casts aspersions about their integrity… the Chief Minister in a highly derogatory and belittling way,” Nanduri said, reports NDTV.

Meanwhile, Tirunelveli District Court on Monday granted bail to Bala a day after his arrest. However, he has said he will continue making such cartoons. “I did not commit a murder, I have no regrets. I will continue to highlight inefficiency of the government through my cartoon,” he told ANI.