'Police threatened to kill him in encounter'

'Police threatened to kill him in encounter'

Dead man's uncle witnessed cops beating him

The same policemen who allegedly tortured Manoj Rana to death at south-west Delhi’s Bindapur on Monday, had searched his house a week ago and threatened to kill him in an encounter soon, alleged the victim’s family on Tuesday.

Around six of them had allegedly barged into Manoj’s house on May 19 and asked for a person named Alam.

“The policemen had searched our house for weapons but found nothing. When leaving, they turned to Manoj and told him they would kill him in an encounter,” alleged Manoj’s elder brother Ashok.

Angry locals claimed there is no one named Alam in their locality. “We have the footage of that day’s incident recorded by a CCTV camera,” said Manjo’s mother Chameli.

The family had installed a CCTV camera after their motorcycle parked outside their house was burnt by someone a few months ago. 

More people in the colony have cameras outside their homes and they claimed that much of Monday’s incident too was captured.

While five policemen, in plainclothes and scarves covering their faces, chased him through the narrow lanes of the colony in Uttam Nagar around 10 am on Monday, three others waited at an exit.

“Two policemen at that exit hit him with a motorcycle to stop him and then thrashed him. One of them hit him in his scrotum,” alleged victim’s uncle Shravan Kumar who claimed to have witnessed the arrest. 

The policemen then took Manoj away in an e-rickshaw to an undisclosed location. “Blood appeared to be oozing from Manoj’s nose. He had injuries in the limbs,” said Ashok who saw the body. Most of the body parts, including the skull, were covered with a cloth.

With a well-built frame, Manoj also worked as a bouncer at some bars apart from driving cabs. Many people in the colony vouched for him, claiming he never indulged in illegal activities, forget owning a pistol for which he was allegedly picked up by police.

The six policemen, accused of torturing him to death, were earlier arrested on Monday and charged with abduction and murder.

The Bindapur SHO was sent to police lines on Tuesday and the case is being investigated by Delhi Police Crime Branch.

Meanwhile, residents of Uttam Nagar east, where police used force to control protesters on Monday night, produced an empty tear-gas shell that had December 2013 as its expiry date.

Among several people injured in the police action is a woman, Anita, who has suffered serious burn injuries to her arm and stomach and had to be admitted to hospital. 

“I was sitting outside my house and was hit by an empty tear-gas shell that had expired,” alleged Anita claiming that the expired ammunition had led to the injuries.

But Ranvir Singh, Additional Commissioner of Police (West), said expired tear-gas shells are not dangerous.

He said he could comment on why police were using expired ammunition only after seeing the shells himself.