Another custodial death slur on police, six personnel including SI reportedly suspended

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IMPHAL, May 8: Barely a week has passed since the alleged custodial death of an alleged former cadre while in the custody of the army had rock the state, that a physically infirm person reportedly arrested by the Imphal East Police commandos in the wee hour of May 8 at around 1:20 am on charges of having nexus with the proscribed group of PREPAK was later found deposited at the JNIMS mortuary this morning at around 10 am. Famiy members of the victim have in the meanwhile alleged intensive torture by the police as the reason behind the man’s death.The victim has been identified as one Thokchom Ranjit, 48, s/o Th Chinglen of Itam Nungoi, Imphal East district under Lamlai police station.According to family sources the victim had been left partly paralysed after meeting with a motor bike accident in 2005. The family member maintained that both his left arm and left leg have been left paralysed after the accident.According to the family members, a team of Imphal east police commandos led by one Sub Inspector, RK. Borjen had arrested the victim from his residence in the wee hours today. They further added that even though the police commandos failed to issue any arrest memo in connection with his arrest, nonetheless they informed the family that he was being arrested on charges of having a nexus with the proscribed PREPAK.The commandos also added that they had already another person on the same charges and that they are looking for another person with the same charges, added the family source.The family further lamented that few hours after the arrest of Ranjit, the family members approached the Porompat Police to get some accounts of the victim, however failed to meet any of the concerned personnel. Later at around 10 am they were informed by a person from the locality that Ranjit has been admitted at the JNIMS as his condition deteriorated during the police interrogation, the family members further said. However as they reached JNIMS to take stock of his situation, they found his lifeless body already deposited at the JNIMS mortuary, they further alleged.Th Tampakleima also disclosed that the same SI who was posted at Sekta at the time, had arrested the victim a few months back on the same charges however he was released on the same day, she added. “My husband was physically handicapped; such person won’t have the strength to fight back his opponent, torturing such impaired man to death is an act of coward”. “How am I going to raise my children without a father”, said Tampakleima with tears in her eyes. Meanwhile a Joint Action Committee has been formed in connection with the death under the banner JAC against the custodial death of Th. Ranjit, during a meeting held today at Itam Nungoi in connection with the alleged custodial death.The JAC’s meet further adopted resolutions which included a demand for termination of SI Brojen and other police personnel involved in the incident.They also demanded to allow video coverage of the post mortem to be conducted on the decease and also urged to prevent such incident in the future.The JAC further warned to launch various forms of agitation in collaboration with likeminded organizations if their demands are not fulfilled within May 11. In a late night development, 6 police personnel including a Sub-Inspector involved in the case have been reportedly suspended. In reaction to the said incident, angered locals of the locality came out at the Imphal Ukhrul road at Itam Nungoi and protested. However since the road was included on the route of the Chief Minister who was on an inspection tour of Dolaithabi Barrage; Imphal East police personnel stormed and dispersed the protestors using tear gas shells. The victim is survived by his wife and two children.

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