Pantheerankavu domestic violence: Woman’s family alleges police inaction

The police have refuted the charge. The family hails from North Paravoor in Ernakulam.
Image used for representational purposes only
Image used for representational purposes only Photo | Express Illustrations

KOZHIKODE: The incident of domestic violence reported at Pantheerankavu in Kozhikode has once again triggered discussions on the alleged ineffectiveness of the local police in acting on such complaints.

Image used for representational purposes only
Kerala: Newlywed woman assaulted by her husband, charged with domestic violence

The family of the newly-wed woman, who was beaten up by her husband Rahul P, has approached Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan alleging negligence by the Pantheerankavu police in filing a case on their complaint. The police have refuted the charge. The family hails from North Paravoor in Ernakulam.

Haridas, the woman’s father, alleged that the police did not treat the incident seriously when they approached them with a complaint. He said they finally left the police station after removing the woman’s mangalsutra (sacred thread) and placing it on the officer’s table, saying she did not want to continue with the marriage.

The woman alleged that Rahul beat her for dowry. “He hit me on the head and forehead and strangled me with a mobile phone charging cable. Still, none in the house stopped him. His family instead asked me to lie to my relatives and say I fell in the washroom. I also suspect Rahul takes drugs,” she alleged.

The woman claimed though the police were told everything, they did not record her statement fully. She also alleged that the police’s report omitted several details. And, according to her, though the police were told that Rahul tried to strangle her, they did not heed her family’s request to add non-bailable charges such as attempt to murder against him.

Alleging there had been no favourable investigation by the police on their complaint, the woman’s family also expressed concerns over the non-arrest of Rahul, an engineer in Germany.

Haridas said they received the marriage proposal via a matrimonial website and the marriage took place at Guruvayur temple on May 5. “Rahul’s family took my daughter to Kozhikode the same day. They came to Ernakulam on May 9 for the wedding reception and left for Kozhikode the next day. On May 12, we went to their house for another function. There were 26 of us. Our daughter initially did not come outside. When asked, her in-laws said she was changing clothes. When she finally came out, there were bruised all over her face. She could not even speak,” recalled Haridas.

The family went to the Pantheerankavu police station and filed a complaint, but alleged that there was no significant response from the police. Haridas said he pointed out the cases of domestic violence and subsequent deaths of Uthra (2020) and Vismaya (2021) – both in Kollam – but the police didn’t pay much attention. When asked to file a non-bailable case against Rahul, the officers allegedly shouted at the family and told them not to teach law to the police.

Pantheerankavu station house officer Sarin A S there was no intentional delay by the police in investigating the case. “We assisted the complainant in undergoing medical tests. We are investigating the case and need to record the statement of the suspect. Further action will be taken based on the test results and witness statements,” Sarin said. He said they will take steps in case the suspect tries to escape.

The police have registered a case under Sections 324 and 498A of the IPC. They said they will take further action, like arrest, as per the ACP’s instructions.

As many as 208 cases of domestic violence registered under IPC Section 498A have been registered in Kozhikode district until April 30 this year. The number of cases was 667 in 2023 and 749 in 2022.

Minister assures help

Kozhikode: Minister Veena George on Tuesday said the government will provide all support, including legal assistance, to the victim in the Pantheerankavu domestic violence case. She said the woman and child department director has been asked to conduct a probe into the incident.

Satheesan flays police

Leader of Opposition V D Satheesan accused the police of seriously failing in the domestic violence case. Instead of consoling the complainant’s father when he went to them for filing a complaint, the police mocked him, Satheesan alleged, adding that this was not the first such incident in Kerala.

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