Tuticorin cops took another 28-year-old weeks before Jayaraj-Beniks, he returned with brain damage, died

  • | Saturday | 4th July, 2020

Just days after the deaths of Jayaraj and Beniks in police custody, yet another case of police brutality comes to light from Tuticorin district which involves the same officials who were involved in the killings of the father-son duo. A 28-year-old man named Mahendran was forcefully taken by Sathankulam Sub Inspector Raghu Ganesh and his team from the residence of his maternal grandmother in the wee hours of May 23. What was his mistake? Mahendran’s elder brother Durai, 35, was one of the nine suspects in a murder case and was not found. Raghu Ganesh and his team took Mahendran into custody to get to Durai.

Chennai: Just days after the deaths of Jayaraj and Beniks in police custody, yet another case of police brutality comes to light from Tuticorin district which involves the same officials who were involved in the killings of the father-son duo. A 28-year-old man named Mahendran was forcefully taken by Sathankulam Sub Inspector Raghu Ganesh and his team from the residence of his maternal grandmother in the wee hours of May 23. What was his mistake? Mahendran’s elder brother Durai, 35, was one of the nine suspects in a murder case and was not found. Raghu Ganesh and his team took Mahendran into custody to get to Durai.

TAKEN FROM HOME WITHOUT WARRANT

Perumal, Mahendran’s maternal uncle said, “They had removed the number plate in the front and back of the car they came in, Raghu Ganesh had a gun with him and was in mufti. They caught Mahendran and said only after your brother surrenders will you be released and they took him from his grandmother’s place. They released him only the following night. When Mahendran came home he was really weak and was not able to move one side was his body.” His family has alleged although Mahendran came home on May 24, he was not himself. Vadivu, Mahendran’s mother, a physically challenged woman, said, “He was not able to move his hand and leg on one side, and I kept asking him what happened to him. He kept asking me to keep quiet.”

The mother breaks down thinking of her young son as she recollects how her mother Mahendran’s grandmother informed her when the police had picked Mahendran and hit him in front of the grandmother. The cops had even asked her to “forget about her grandson”. Vadivu, a hearing impaired woman was completely dependent on her younger son Mahendran, and she recalls the two weeks she waited in hope of Mahendran’s recovery. “I saw that he was very unwell and was not even able to drink water even, then I took him to the hospital in Tuticorin and there they scanned his head and said there was sudden infractions in the head. I admitted him to the hospital on Thursday and on Saturday he died.”

The mother sobs recollecting the pain that her son suffered in the last few days of his life. Vadivu says that her son was innocent, a man with no prior records of crime. “Though I repeatedly asked him what happened. He just kept quiet. When he returned from the station he was extremely hurt. They forcefully took him away from my mother’s place,” says Mahendran’s mother.

HOSPITAL REPORTS SHOW BRAIN DAMAGE

Mahendran was a daily wage labourer and with the pandemic putting them out of work the family was struggling to make ends meet. After two weeks of suffering at home and three more days in the hospital, the 28-year-old man lost the battle. The MRI report of the youngster showed that he had suffered acute left MCA territory infract and thrombosis (meaning clotting) in the brain. Doctors say during a cerebrovascular accident can cause the brain damages Mahendran suffered and which in turn leads to the observation made by the family partial paralysis of one side, inability to swallow or eat, weakness and other symptoms.

NO POST-MORTEM DONE

The family recalls how the hospital denied performing a post-mortem on Mahendran’s body and took away their only hope to know what happened to him. “We wanted a post-mortem to be done but they said there are coronavirus cases and asked us to take him away. So we brought his body back and buried him,” said the family. Vadivu is not ready to let her son’s death go away, her only demand is justice. On June 20, Vadivu accompanied by the village president had approached the Tuticorin SP. Vadivu’s lawyer Dr Ramaswamy, a Supreme Court lawyer says, “The mother took the petition and along with the local president went to the SP of Tuticorin and the SP refused to listen. She lost her son and just days after Jayaraj and Beniks lost their lives.” Vadivu tried approaching the SP for getting justice for her sons Mahendran who was killed in the police brutality and Durai, whom she says is innocent and has been falsely charged. When the SP refused to meet her, she tried approaching the Tuticorin collector and that too didn’t work as expected and finally, Vadivu approached the court.

CALLS FOR JUSTICE

Ramanujam, who will represent Vadivu at the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court, said, “The main aim of the case is to find justice for Mahendran. He was taken without any FIR and was brutally attacked. He was in custody. He wasn’t submitted to the local magistrate. Who are you to take the law into your hand? Who are you to enter a widow woman’s house when she was alone?” “A proper compensation has to be given to the woman. The real culprit here are the SP of Tuticorin and inspector Sreedar and Raghu Ganesh. They need to be booked for murder. Sreedhar and Raghuganesh were immediately responsible but the SP had he acted he could have avoided more murder and we want to keep all three responsible.”

Former SP Arun Balagopalan, Inspector Sreedhar and Sub-Inspector Raghu Ganesh, all three should be booked with murder charges is the demand of the council. Had the SP taken Vadivu’s complaint seriously, may be Jayaraj and Beniks, who were taken into custody on June 19 might not have had the fatal custodial treatment. May be, their condition might have been different, claim Vadivu’s counsel.



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