Consider VCK man's killing as caste murder, Govt told

Evidence's Executive Director A Kathir, who led a fact-finding team to probe the crime, said Mugesh had lodged a complaint against the boy accusing him of damaging the poster.

Published: 18th November 2022 05:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th November 2022 05:25 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

THOOTHUKUDI: Madurai-based rights group Evidence has urged the State government to consider the murder of the VCK man belonging to an SC community over damage to a banner of Muthuramalinga Thevar as a caste-based killing. A VCK member, S Marimuthu (38), was murdered on Sunday afternoon by an armed gang after his minor son allegedly damaged the digital poster put up across the Ambedkar Statue in 3 cent Anthoniarpuram. Marimuthu was trying to protect the boy from attack, the FIR said. The boy is being treated at Thoothukudi medical college hospital.

According to the FIR, the six accused -- S Mugesh alias Panai, his brothers Meeran alias Moorthy, Murali and his father Shanmugavel, Pathirakalimuthu alias Muthupandi and Jeya Muthulingam -- had attempted to hack the 14-year-old at his home for tearing the poster. Marimuthu tried to protect his son, but was hacked by Mugesh. As Marimuthu was lying in a pool of blood, Pathirakalimuthu stabbed him in his chest while Muthulingam injured his thigh, the FIR said.

Thoothukudi South Police booked the accused under Sections 147, 148, 294(b), 324, 307, 302, 506(2), 109, 120B of IPC, and Sections 3(1)(r), 3(1)(s), 3(2)(v) of Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act, 2015. However, police have so far reportedly only arrested three of the accused -- Mugesh, Pathirakalimuthu and Muthulingam. While Mugesh belongs to an SC community, the two others belong to intermediate castes. Marimuthu's wife Radha, in her complaint, alleged that the six men had conspired to murder both her husband and son at Celseeni colony park.

Evidence's Executive Director A Kathir, who led a fact-finding team to probe the crime, said Mugesh had lodged a complaint against the boy accusing him of damaging the poster. The issue was settled in the presence of Thoothukudi South police after Marimuthu paid Rs 1,500 although he denied the allegations. "The issue continued to boil due to the caste creed of Muthulingam and Pathirakalimuthu, who engineered the murder. Mugesh was incited to commit the crime," he told TNIE.

The fact-finding team urged Thoothukudi police to arrest the other three accused, including the father and brothers of Mugesh. "The accused abused Marimuthu by his caste name during the murder. The state should not give bail for the accused until investigations are completed and a judgment is out. The State government should provide a government job for one member of Marimuthu's family, and a monthly pension of Rs 15,000. Educational expenses of Marimuthu's three children should also be taken care of by the government, the fact finding team recommended.  

Meanwhile, the district administration has handed over a cheque of Rs 6 lakh to Radha and another Rs 6 lakh would be provided to them when the chargesheet is submitted.


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