A Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court in Kerala on Wednesday sentenced to death police constables K Jithukumar and SV Sreekumar in connection with the custodial murder of Udayakumar in 2005. KV Soman, their colleague who was accused of murder had died during the course of the trial.
The court has also handed out a sentence of three-year imprisonment to sub-inspector Ajith Kumar, circle inspector EK Sabu and the then Assistant Commissioner of Fort K Haridas who were found guilty of conspiracy, destroying evidence and foisting a false robbery case on Udayakumar.
Police constables K Jithukumar and SV Sreekumar who were accused number 1 and 2 respectively have also been asked to pay a fine amounting to Rs 2 lakhs.
Udayakumarâ€™s case had shocked Kerala in 2005. The young man was spread-eagled on a bench and crushed with an iron pipe. In 2005, the Crime Branch arrested three police constables, but witnesses in the case later turned hostile, and the accused policemen were granted bail.
K Jithukumar (left) and SV Sreekumar
In 2007, the Central Bureau of Investigation took over the investigation after a High Court directive, which came in response to a petition filed by Udayakumarâ€™s mother Prabhavathi Amma.
Udayakumar and his friend Suresh Kumar were picked up by the Fort Police in Thiruvananthapuram on September 27, 2005 when they were sitting at the Sreekanteswaram Park in the city. Suresh was involved in a case of theft and since some money was also found on Udayakumar, both of them were apprehended.
They were subjected to brutal torture at the police station, and the injuries Udayakumar sustained is what led to his death.
The CBI that probed the case had said that Udayakumarâ€™s death was a case of â€˜urutti kolaâ€™, a practice of â€˜rollingâ€™ a heavy wooden log over the body of an accused. The Kerala police have been in trouble before too for using this method of torture.