CHENNAI : ‘Trigger-happy’ sub-inspector A Kalidoss, accused of gunning down a 22-year-old youth under custody in Ramanathapuram district on Tuesday, should be arrested on charges of murder along with six other police personnel who were present in the station at the time of the incident, according to a fact finding report by a group of human rights.
Corroborating statements of various witnesses, the report, prepared by the Campaign for Custodial Justice & Abolition of Torture, said the victim Syed Mohammed was tortured and beaten to death before shots were fired allegedly to make it appear like an “encounter.”
The version of K Ramesh, running a pharmacy shop close to the SP Pattinam police station and the only person allowed entry on the fateful day, quoted in the report says not even a single drop of blood stain was spotted on the white ‘dhoti’ that Syed was wearing.
“Ramesh thought that Syed Mohammed was drunk and hence was sleeping due to intoxication. If a person was shot when he was alive there should be heavy blood flow from his body. In this case, even though Syed Mohammed was shot thrice there were no blood stains on the victim’s body and on his white dhoti,” said the report prepared a team of activists of Campaign for Custodial Justice & Abolition of Torture.
The report further alleged that Deputy Superintendent of Police Sekar had come to the station immediately after Syed Mohammed was beaten to death and fabricated the custodial death into a case of “encounter”. Citing the version of the ambulance driver Azad, the report said Syed Mohammed’s body was taken to Thiruppalaikudi Police Station where the Superintendent of Police and a few other senior police officers inspected the body in the ambulance. The report called for booking of the senior police officers as well under charges of abetment of murder and demanded an independent investigation into the case.
Meanwhile, Members of the Human Rights Protection Council, a Rights NGO, released a fact finding report, alleging police cover up in the issue and staged a demonstration in front of the High Court Bench complex in Madurai.
Advocate C Vanchinathan, a member of the NGO, said the ambulance driver was informed that a person had been injured. “However, the driver reached on reachign the station noticed that the person was already dead,” he said. Further, the police had snatched the driver’s mobile phone, he alleged. During the protest, slogans were raised condemning the BJP and Hindu Munnani for trying to communalise the issue.