TN custodial deaths: CB-CID arrests SI, head constable on murder charges

Cases registered against sub-inspectors Raghu Ganesh and Balakrishnan; and constables Muthuraj, Murugan, Sellathurai, and Maharajan

Sub-Inspector Raghu Ganesh | File photo: By special arrangement

The Tamil Nadu Crime Branch-CID police have arrested sub-inspector Raghu Ganesh and head constable Murugan who, along with other policemen at the Sathankulam police station in Tuticorin district, allegedly tortured and killed father-son duo Jayaraj and Benicks. (The duo was taken into custody on June 19 after a reported altercation with the police. The Federal had reported that the policemen brutalised them and inflicted torture for a prolonged period).

The arrest was reportedly made by a special team of the CB-CID on the basis of the police eyewitness statement of head constable Revathy. (Revathy had given her statement to Judicial Magistrate M.S. Bharathidasan who was visiting the police station for an inquiry).

A day after the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court asked the CB-CID to investigate the custodial death case, the police, after a preliminary investigation, altered the FIR to include murder charges (Section 302 of IPC). The police have registered two cases under six sections, including murder.

Related Analysis: Arrestees have rights too: Know if these were exercised for Jayaraj, Bennicks

Cases were registered against sub-inspectors Raghu Ganesh and Balakrishnan; and constables Muthuraj, Murugan, Sellathurai, and Maharajan. Maharajan had reportedly abused the magistrate when he had visited the station for an inquiry.

The CB-CID had constituted 12 special teams under Inspector-General of Police (IG) Shankar and a superintendent of police to inquire the custodial death. The CB-CID inquiry is an interim arrangement on the directive of the Madras High Court. The CB-CID will handle the case until it is taken over by the CBI, as per an executive decision of the Tamil Nadu government.

The police sources said arrest and search parties had fanned out to arrest the rest of the accused, all policemen who were part of the Sathankulam police station.

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