Man Dies of 'Custodial Torture' in Ganjam Dist
By Express News Service | Published: 10th June 2015 06:04 AM |
BERHAMPUR: Tension ran high in Patadhar village under Jagannathprasad block of Ganjam district following the death of a villager, Gourahari Swain (40), allegedly due to custodial torture on Tuesday.
In a written complaint to Ganjam SP Narasingha Bhol, wife of Gourahari, Kuntilata alleged that personnel from the Jagannathprasad police station had taken her husband from their house on Monday night and physically assaulted him. “They dragged my husband out of our house at around 11 pm and took him to the police station on charges of his involvement in a theft case that had taken place in a nearby village a fortnight back,” she said.
At around 7 am on Tuesday, Gourahari was brought by the police to the community health centre (CHC) at Jagannathprasad with multiple injuries and 30 minutes later, he succumbed.
As soon as the news of Gourahari’s death spread, Kuntilata accompanied by other villagers reached the CHC and did not allow police to send the body for post-mortem. They also blocked the road in front of the CHC for over four hours. Apprehending public ire, police locked up the Jagannathprasad police station from inside.
On being informed, the SP, Bhanjanagar Sub-Collector Sudhakar Sabar and senior Government officials reached the village to pacify the irate villagers. While the Sub-Collector released Rs 22,000 for funeral rites of Gourahari, a case was registered against all the police officials present in the police station during the incident.
The SP informed that a high-level inquiry has been ordered in the case and investigation will be completed within 24 hours. Stringent action will be taken against those found guilty, he added. One platoon of police force has been deployed in Patadhar village to prevent any untoward incident.
Sources said police suspected Gourahari’s involvement in the theft case in Khamrapalli, situated near Patadhar village. When they questioned him about it on Monday night, a frightened Gourahari reportedly admitted to have committed the theft. However, he could not give any details about the theft during interrogation.