HC rapping officers in custodial death case
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Last Updated: Friday, March 30, 2012, 00:27
Mumbai: Rapping the police for "abusing its power" which allegedly resulted in the custodial death of a 34-year-old man, the Bombay High Court on Thursday directed Maharashtra government to initiate action against the officers who were in-charge of Ulhasnagar police station at the time.

The division bench of Justices P B Majmudar and R D Dhanuka was hearing a public interest litigation filed by social activist Hardas Tharwani, seeking probe by an independent agency into alleged murder of Sunil Shelke by Ulhasnagar police in neighbouring Thane district.

Shelke was arrested on April 12 last year on the charge of assaulting his wife. The next day he was found dead in the lock-up. Earlier in February, another person, Narayan Rathod, too died at the same police station.

Public prosecutor Pandurang Pol said state CID was probing the case, and a police constable had been suspended.

As per the autopsy report, Shelke died due to poisoning, Pol said.

"Only one constable has been suspended? An innocent man has been killed. He was not a terrorist to be murdered in custody. It is the duty of the police to protect citizens, not to go around killing them. This is abuse of power," said Justice Majmudar.

Directing the secretary of state home department to take remedial measures and action against guilty officers, Justice Majmudar said, "It is the duty of the government to see to it that higher police officials who were in charge of the police station are inquired against."

The court also directed CID to continue investigation and submit a progress report on April 18.


First Published: Friday, March 30, 2012, 00:27

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