Rules were major causality here

Rules were major causality here

The authorities may be found guilty of illegal detention resulting in death, if the Central Relief Committee personnel had not produced the beggars before a judicial magistrate within 24 hours of taking them into custody.

With investigations into the deaths by State Human Rights Commission gathering steam, it is learnt that there is every likelihood of authorities’ failure to produce the detained beggars before a judicial magistrate. “Even if they were legally detained, the deaths mandate a compulsory inquest into the cause of the demise under Section 176 (1)(a) IPC,” said a SHRC personnel. Also, the officials are required by law to inform the judicial magistrate and the police if a death has occurred.

Further, the death memo in a government house ought to mention a proper cause and reason, which, however is not found in the case of 28 deaths over the past four days. “The cause of death in all these cases has been shown as vomiting and diarrhoea amounting to ‘natural death’. How is that possible?,” a SHRC official questioned.

Moreover, it is also said that the records at the Central Relief Committee are not clear on the name, age and reason for the deaths. “We have found nearly eight people by the name of Muga, both dead and alive, in the records.” an official said. No proper database of the inmates have been maintained, he said. Meanwhile, a new borewell was sunk overnight on Monday at the colony. The overhead tanks which supply water to the kitchen were as also cleaned.

PIL seeks fact finding panel

The High Court Legal Services Committee (HCLSC) on Monday filed a public interest litigation seeking directions to initiate action against officials responsible for the death of beggars at the Karnataka State Rehabilitation Centre in the City.

The Committee, in its petition has charged the State Government with failure to ensure Right to Life guaranteed under Article 14 of the Constitution. It makes a reference to a similar tragedy at remand home in Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu. It has compared the deaths to custodial deaths as the inmates were sheltered by the State.

The committee has sought direction to the government to maintain hygiene at all rehabilitation centres in the State to prevent a recurrence and to constitute a fact-finding committee to look into the incident. The petition is said to have been filed at the instance of the Chief Justice.

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