Prabhakar and his wife, residents of Salem district of Tamil Nadu, were forcibly taken away by the police of three police stations on suspicion of theft. Four days later, the police informed his family that Prabhakar was in the hospital and his condition was critical. Three policemen have been suspended amid allegations of custodial torture.
New Delhi: A case of a differently-abled Dalit man living in Karuppur in Salem district of Tamil Nadu was found dead in police custody on January 12.
According to the report of The News Minute, the said person was picked up from the house by the police on January 8 on charges of theft along with his wife. Prabhakar belonged to Scheduled Caste (SC) and his wife Amshala belonged to Scheduled Tribe (ST).
Prabhakar and his wife Amshala were allegedly apprehended from their house on January 8 by a joint team of officers from three different police stations in the state’s Namakkal district. Police were looking for suspects in a jewelery theft case.
Prabhakar’s brother Sakthivel was an eyewitness present at the spot. According to him, the couple was abused and beaten up in their own house.
Police from Puduchatram, Tiruchengod and Senthamangalam stations in Namakkal had reached Prabhakar’s house in connection with a jewelery theft case. Prabhakar was taken to Namakkal, where he was kept in a sub-jail. He died four days later on 12 January.
Three policemen have been suspended amid allegations of custodial torture.
An FIR has been lodged by Sakthivel in this matter. In this complaint lodged by the Salem city police, Sakthivel has alleged that Prabhakar and Amshala were dragged out of the house by the Namakkal police. Amshala was dragged by her hair. After that brought them out of the house and beat both of them back.
According to the complaint, neighbors came out on hearing the commotion and protested the thrashing of a specially abled man, but the police also threatened the crowd that it would be worse if they did not keep quiet.
However, the police have registered a case under section 176 of CrPC, in which the investigation is done by the magistrate.
According to Sakthivel’s statement, Karuppur police in Salem reached the spot as soon as the information about the uproar was received. They took Prabhakar and Amshala into custody saying they were being taken to Karuppur police station.
However, Sakthivel alleged that the couple was neither found at Karuppur station nor in any court in Salem and Namakkal when they went out in search of them. After two days of unsuccessful search, Prabhakar’s son filed a missing complaint online on January 10.
Sakthivel has told in the FIR that on the night of January 12, his family received a call, the person posing as a policeman said that your brother is in the government hospital in Salem and his condition is critical.
On reaching the hospital, Sakthivel came to know that Amshala had been remanded to the Women’s Jail in Salem a day earlier, while Prabhakar was kept in the Namakkal sub-jail.
According to Sakthivel, when Prabhakar’s condition deteriorated, he was taken to Salem Hospital, where he later died.
The leader of a local organization has also sent a video in this regard to The News Minute, in which Amshala is narrating the horrific incident of January 8.
In this video, she can be seen saying how the police officer beat up both the husband and wife while her husband lying on the ground kept saying that he could not walk and had no role in the theft. On this the officers were showing him the power of the police.
He told that the said police officer Chandran (who has been suspended) was in normal clothes, not in uniform.
He has named another police officer in the above video, who had assaulted Prabhakar. But, according to The News Minute, that police officer’s name was not on the list of suspended police officers till the time of filing the report.
At the same time, the police is refraining from making any comment in the matter.
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