Tension gripped the district on Friday after the suspicious death of a Dalit agricultural labourer at a farm owned by a Caste Hindu.
Jayaraman (43), son of Thantchan alais Thertha, a resident of Kondampatti, a locality close to the place where caste clashes occurred on November 7 last year, reportedly died after suffering an electric shock around 3 pm.
According to a source, Jayaraman worked at a farm owned by four Caste Hindu brothers - Ravi, Palani, Mathu and Subramani. Electricity supply to the area was reportedly being suspended between noon and 3 pm for the past one week. On Friday, Jayaraman was removing the bushes on the land when his weeder came in contact with a live wire just when the power supply resumed. In the impact of the shock Jayaraman collapsed in the same spot. The owners of the farm immediately called for a 108 ambulance, which reached the spot around 3.15 pm. The ambulance staff, however, found Jayaraman dead.
News of the worker’s death spread quickly and in a few hours a huge crowd gathered at the spot. Police personnel from the Krishnapuram station too reached the farm. When they tried to remove the body, villagers opposed suspecting foul play in Jayaraman’s death.
“We have many doubts regarding my husband’s death. The police should file a murder case against the land owners,” said Jayaraman’s wife Palaniammal.
Police officials allegedly thrashed Jayaraman’s brother Mathan, who works in the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), when he stopped cops from removing the body. Other villagers, who tried to intervene, were also allegedly beaten up. Nearly, ten people, including five women were injured, a villager said.
When contacted, Superintendent of Police Asra Garg said, “The police are registering the case now (10.30 pm). Palaniammal has lodged two complaints. However, I have directed the officials to file a case according to the first complaint.”