Custodial death of Chennai youth: CB-CID to file case against cops

The HC further ordered the state to provide a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the family members of the deceased youth's family.
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CHENNAI: The Madras High Court ordered the CB-CID police to file a murder case against policemen who served in the ICF police station in 2012 for an alleged custodial death of a 22-year-old youth. The HC further ordered the state to provide a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the family members of the deceased youth's family.

Justice GK Ilanthiraiyan passed the orders on allowing a petition filed by S Pongulali, mother of the deceased person.

As the post-mortem report of the deceased witnessed that the petitioner’s son had several severe injuries certainly on the head and died just two to three days before the post-mortem was conducted, the judge held that he was killed in custody since the police personnel had beaten him.

“The Supreme Court of India repeatedly held that when the death takes place inside the police station, the accused persons should be punished for the offence under Section 302 of IPC. When the CBCID found that there are materials to attract the major offence under Section 304 (ii) of IPC, what is the reason why the eighth respondent failed to alter the offence under Section 302 of IPC?” the judge asked and directed the CB-CID to file a case under section 302 against policemen who are responsible for the custodial death.

The court further ruled that there is a great responsibility on the police authority to ensure that the citizen in its custody is not deprived of his right to life. “His liberty is in the very nature of things circumscribed by the very fact of his confinement and therefore his interest in the limited liberty left to him is rather precious. The wrongdoer is accountable and the state is responsible if the person in custody of the police is deprived of his life except according to the procedure established by law, ” the court held.

The petitioner sought a direction to file a murder case under section 302 of the IPC against Ramalingam, an incumbent police inspector of the K7-ICF police station and other policemen who caused the death of the youth named Nithya aka Nithyaraj. She further wanted to transfer the case to the CBI.

According to the petitioner, her son, a member of ‘Friends of Police’ was arrested by the ICF police on charges of robbing a mobile phone from a couple on January 11, 2012, and was produced before a magistrate on January 14, 2012.

“While the police produced my son to the Magistrate, he was seen with injuries. Also, when he was remanded, he was treated in Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital and Government Hospital Royapettah. As police assaulted my son, he died on January 16, 2012, suspiciously, ” the petitioner submitted.

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