Unchecked, unquestioned, police atrocities continue

According to NCRB data, between 2001 and 2018 as many as 1,727 people have died in police and judicial custody | Image - Eunice Dhivya

“I say with all sense of responsibility that there is not a single lawless group in the whole of the country, whose record of crime comes anywhere near the record of that organised unit which is known as the Indian Police Force,” said Justice AN Mulla of Allahabad High Court, around a half a century ago.

However, nothing much has changed in 50 years. A few weeks back, Jeyaraj and Bennicks, a father-son duo in Sathankulam in Tamil Nadu’s Tuticorin who were picked up for questioning for COVID lockdown violation, were beaten black and blue and sexually assaulted in a police station, resulting in their death.

Coming soon after the case of George Floyd, an Afro-American, who was killed by a white police officer in the US, the killings triggered a massive outrage against police atrocities.

Although Floyd’s killers were dismissed from service and charged with third degree murder, Jeyaraj-Bennicks’ killers were initially only transferred. They were later suspended and an enquiry opened against them only after agitations.

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