'Agents' of contractor 'influence' manhole victims' kin

'Agents' of contractor 'influence' manhole victims' kin

'Agents' of contractor 'influence' manhole victims' kin

Ramky Infrastructure, the company which had hired the three workers who asphyxiated to death while cleaning a manhole in CV Raman Nagar on March 7, is said to be influencing their families.

Amid uncertainty about compensation for the deceased workers, agents claiming to represent Ramky Infrastructure gave each family Rs 30,000 on Wednesday night before they left Bengaluru for their hometown for performing the last rites.

The ‘agents’ claimed that the money was meant for funeral expenses. The agents — identified as Devaraj, Prashanth and Srinivas — turned up at the mortuary of Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital around 7 pm on Wednesday.

They spoke to the victims’ relatives as well as activists present there, said Mahesh, an IT professional from Srikakulam in Andhra Pradesh, who has been helping the families complete the formalities. One of the victims was known to his extended family in Andhra Pradesh, he said.

Disgruntled employees
“Initially, one of the agents claimed he was a leader of Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe Morcha, while the two men accompanying him posed as disgruntled employees of Ramky Infrastructure. They said Ramky Infrastructure was not paying them properly and that it was suffering losses,” Mahesh said, quoting the ‘agents’.

“The agents then started bargaining when the victim’s families demanded higher compensation. The deal was struck at Rs 30,000 for each family,” Mahesh said. “These agents had come to the mortuary to assess the situation and study the mood of the families.” He added that attempts to influence the families began as soon as they arrived in Bengaluru on Wednesday afternoon.

Mayor G Padmavathi said representatives of Ramky Infrastructure were absconding.