KOTA: A man on Saturday said he and four others were brutally beaten up in lock-up by police personnel for five days, the second case of alleged custodial torture in Rajasthan's Kota region to come to light within a week.
Bundi SP Mamta Gupta said the allegation would be looked into and stern action taken against whoever is found guilty after Mahavir Bhatia, 42, a resident of Bhatia Ki Jhopdiya of the district, levelled the allegations at a press conference with a local BJP leader.
Bhatia, who was accompanied by BJP state committee member Rupesh Sharma, told reporters Gendoli police station SHO and four other police personnel tortured and thrashed him and four others between August 25 and 29.
But SHO Niranjan Meena denied the charge, saying Bhatia is a known criminal and his medical report does not mention any injury when he was produced in a court and granted bail in a case of idol theft.
Bhatia alleged the police personnel tied "my hands and legs with a rope, hanged me downward" and beat him with sticks and heavy beams.
The police personnel would smear sugar and jaggery over their bodies and release insects on their bodies, he alleged, adding, the SHO would put one of his feet over his face that caused deep injury near his eye.
Bhatia alleged the SHO, before producing them before a court on August 29, threatened them not to disclose the custodial torture to anyone.
After their release on bail, he claimed, others who were tortured similarly have not come out in public about their ordeal as they remain in deep shock.
Bhatia said the SHO had picked up him and his friend on August 25 from a tea shop and locked them up with three others for five days.
Sharma said Bhatia reached out to him this morning and narrated the whole episode, after which the BJP leader asked him to reveal it to the media.
He said he has submitted a memorandum to Bundi SP and demanded that the police personnel be booked for criminal offence and suspended.
Sharma claimed the doctor, who issued a medical certificate before the court appearance of the victims on August 29, did so without mentioning the wounds and the alleged torture.
SHO Meena refuted the charges and said Bhatia is a notorious criminal suspected to be involved in a case of idol theft from Banskheda village.
He said police picked up Bhatia and his friend on August 29 for questioning in the same case and they were produced before the court the same day.
The SHO also cited the medical report and said the doctor would have mentioned injuries had there been any.
"We will look into the complaint against SHO Gendoli police station and others and will get it thoroughly examined and accordingly will order an inquiry into the allegation by Mahavir Bhatia," SP Gupta told PTI this evening.
Last week, a station house officer was suspended and 21 other police personnel posted at the Mahavir Nagar police station in Kota were sent to police lines following the death of Hanuman Koli in custody on August 23.