The CBCID has begun investigation in the case on Tuesday evening.

Human Rights body issues notice to Thoothukudi cops over Jayaraj Bennix custodial deaths
news Sathankulam custodial deaths Wednesday, July 01, 2020 - 17:00

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Wednesday said it has issued notices to the Director General of Police (DGP) of Tamil Nadu and Superintendent of Police (SP) of Thoothukudi district in the southern state over the death of a father-son duo allegedly due to torture by police.

The NHRC, in a tweet, also said it has sought a report from the police officers, which has to "include inquest report, post-mortem examination report, medical treatment record, magisterial enquiry report and health screening report of both victims, within 6 weeks".

P Jayaraj and his son Bennix , who were arrested for "violating" lockdown norms over the business hours of their cell phone shop, died in a government hospital in Thoothukudi's Kovilpatti on June 23.Their relatives and friends have alleged that they were severely thrashed at the Sathankulam police station by the policemen on June 19 causing a nationwide uproar. 

"NHRC notice to DGP, Tamil Nadu and SP, Thoothukudi on allegations of the deaths of father-son due to police torture," the rights panel said in a tweet.

The Madras High Court, on Tuesday, ordered a probe by the Crime Branch, Criminal Investigation Department (CB-CID) into the case after it anticipated delays in the CBI starting its probe. Based on the order of the court, the CB-CID begun its investigation on Tuesday evening starting from Sathankulam station.

The court also took into record the allegations made by the Judicial Magistrate of Kovilpatti who visited the Sathankulam police station to conduct his inquiry on the custodial deaths of the duo, the statement by a head constable in the station and the observations made in the preliminary report by the doctors in who conducted the postmortem of Jayaraj and Bennix -- that Jayaraj and Bennix suffered grievous injuries on their bodies before their death. Combining these aspects, the high court stated that there was prima facie grounds for the police to register an FIR under section 302 (Murder) against the Sathankulam policemen.

The state government had, on Monday, transferred the case to the CBI. 

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