Police sources say that the five cops were allegedly holding the father-son duo while they were being beaten by other police personnel.

Father Jayaraj and son Bennix
news Custodial death Thursday, July 09, 2020 - 09:29

The CB-CID  on Wednesday night arrested five more police personnel in the Sathankulam custodial death case for abetting the offence. With the new arrests, a total of 10 policemen have been arrested in the custodial violence case that led to the deaths of the two traders Jayaraj and Bennix.

CB-CID sources told TNM that the five police personnel — Special Sub-Inspector Paldurai, head constable Samadurai and constables Veyilmuthu, Chelladurai and Thomas — have been arrested for abetting the offence. “The five police personnel were holding the accused while the sub-inspector beat them,” the source said.

Cases have been booked against the five under Section 302 (Punishment for murder), Section 201 (Causing disappearance of evidence of offence), Section 342 r/w 107 (Punishment for wrongful confinement) of the IPC. The five police personnel were taken for a health screening before being produced in front of the magistrate.

The CB-CID had detained the five men on Wednesday morning for investigation.

Last week, five other policemen, including the prime accused in the case, were arrested by the CB-CID. The CBCID arrested inspector Sridhar, sub-inspectors Balakrishnan and Raghuganesh, head constable Muthuraj and constable S Murugan. The CB-CID also registered cases under Section 302 (Murder) of Indian Penal Code.

The father and son, Jayaraj and Bennix, owners of a mobile shop in Sathankulam, were picked up by the police for allegedly keeping the shop open for a few minutes over the prescribed time during the lockdown. The two traders were allegedly assaulted in the police station by the policemen. On June 22, Bennix complained of chest pain and died at Kovilpatti Government Hospital while his father Jayaraj also succumbed within a few hours on June 23, while in the custody of the Sathankulam police.  

The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court heard the case after taking suo motu cognisance. Amid widespread protests, the Tamil Nadu government told the court that they had decided to transfer the case to the CBI. The Madras High Court ordered a CBI probe into the case, based on the report submitted by the magistrate and the recording of an eyewitness.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said that the union government on Tuesday issued a notification to transfer the case to CBI. The CBI has filed an FIR in connection with the case.

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