VELLORE: After a three-day protest by family refusing to the receive the body of 50-year-old Panneerselvam, who committed suicide on Tuesday allegedly after his daughter married a Dalit youth, his family members finally received the body late on Thursday. This brought to an end the tension that prevailed at the Government Hospital in Ambur, where the body was kept after the post-mortem. After obtaining signatures from five of the family members and five villagers, the body was handed over to the family.
In the meantime, the police department stepped up security in and around colonies of Vanniyars and Dalits in the village.
Illavarasi (20) eloped with her lover Vignesh Kumar (23) of the same village on Friday last and the couple got married. On hearing about this, Panneerselvam drank pesticide and killed himself. Autopsy was conducted on the body at 6 am on Wednesday and his family was intimated to receive the body. However, they refused and launched a protest. After the body remained unclaimed till Thursday afternoon, the police submitted a letter to the sub-collector regarding the issue.
The sub-collector reached the Taluk office in Ambur around 8 pm and held talks with Panneerselvam’s wife Selvi, son Babu and their close relatives Usha and Jamuna. She told them if they refused to collect the body it would be handed over to the Ambur Municipality as an “unclaimed or orphaned” body and the local body would cremate it.
“The family members then agreed to receive the body. They, however, requested to take action against those responsible for the death of Panneerselvam. We told them that action would be taken as per the law,” Shilpha Prabhakar said.
The family wanted to meet Illavarasi, but the sub-collector asked them to approach the court for permission.