In a desperate move to save its face, the Kerala police issued a ‘punishment transfer’ to one of its own on Sunday, after the cop resorted to primitive methods of treating offenders.
Sub-Inspector AC Vipin of Ernakulam South station was transferred out of the station after he locked up three youths in the station on Saturday night, while allowing them to wear only their underwear.
The swift action by Trikkakara Assistant Commissioner comes only hours after Kerala Police Complaints Authority chairman Justice Narayana Kurup made a surprise visit to the station late on Saturday night.
According to reports, a team led by the sub-inspector found three youths in a car near Kochukadavanthara in the city at around 10.30 pm on Saturday night. The officers who were on routine check for drunk driving, found that two youths were in an inebirated state, although the driver of the car wasn’t.
But despite them maintaining that the driver of the car was not under the influence of alcohol, the police reportedly asked them to get on the police vehicle to get their medical tests done. However, once the three youngsters boarded the police vehicle, they were reportedly taken to the police station and locked up in a cell.
It was only after Justice Narayana Kurup arrived and inspected the station that the three of them were allowed to wear their clothes. A video of the incident published by Malayalam television channel Manorama News shows Justice Narayana Kurup asking the sub-inspector to open the door to the cell.
The three youngsters can be seen lodged in the cell with only their undergarments on. The sub-inspector is seen trying to explain his version to Justice Narayana Kurup.
After protests against the police's action mounted, the men were let off through the back door of the station, say local media reports.
Youth Congress members carried out a protest march to the office of the city Police Commissioner. Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala too, was quick to politicise the incident and target the ruling CPI(M)-led LDF government.
The Congress leader demanded to know whether such primitive approach by the Kerala police was part of LDF's policy for the state.