Kerala custodial death: Mom alleges she was not allowed to give her son water

Kerala custodial death: Mom alleges she was not allowed to give her son water

Mother of Sreejith, who died in police custody, today alleged that she was not allowed to give him water when he cried for it in pain due to torture at the police station in Varappuzha near here.

Shyamala, Sreejith's mother, said she had gone to meet her son at the police station on Saturday morning, a day after he was taken into custody in connection with the death of a 55-year-old man.

She said she was not allowed to meet Sreejith, but saw him sitting in the corner of the police station covering his stomach with severe pain.

Talking to Malayalam news channels, Shyamala said policemen did not even allow her to meet her son when he cried calling her "Amma" (mother).

"When the police took him to a hospital from the station, I ran after them crying. He (Sreejith) just said he was being taken to the hospital as he had severe pain in his abdomen," she said.

Shyamala said she waited there till they returned from the hospital. "I asked the police what happened to him. A policeman said he vomited as he did not have food and told me to give some water." "I went to a house in the neighbourhood and brought some water. When I reached the station, the Sub Inspector shouted at us. I could not fulfil my son's wish to have some water," she said.

Sreejith's kin alleged that Sreejith was thrashed soon after he was taken into custody by three policemen in plainclothes. Three policemen were suspended yesterday in connection with the death of the 26-year-old man in police custody, while a Special Investigation Team (SIT) was formed to probe the case.

Police have rejected the reports suggesting that the alleged custodial torture of Sreejith and his subsequent death could be a case of mistaken identity. Some persons, including Sreejith, were taken into custody in connection with the death of a 55-year old man, who was found hanging in his house after a group of miscreants attacked his house on Friday last.

Vinish, son of Vasudevan who was found hanging, had said yesterday that he had not named Sreejith or his brother as an accused in the case. The police, however, rejected it saying Sreejith was taken into custody based on the complaint filed by the deceased's son.

Ernakulam Rural SP AV George had yesterday said that preliminary inquiry revealed that there were instances of official misconduct from the three policemen who took Sreejith into custody.

DGP Loknath Behera has constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate the case following allegations that police harassment and torture caused the death of Sreejith. Senior IPS officer S Sreejith is the head of the SIT. BJP had observed a dawn-to-dusk hartal yesterday in Varappuzha Panchayat, protesting the death of Sreejith, who they claimed was a party worker.

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