BJP protests 'custodial death' of 15-year-old in WB

BJP protests 'custodial death' of 15-year-old in West Bengal, alleges cops 'shielded by TMC'

The teenager's father, however, said he is a TMC supporter and his son died by suicide

BJP supporters block a road in protest against the death of a party supporter in the police lockup, in Birbhum district of West Bengal. Credit: PTI Photo

BJP youth wing state president Saumitra Khan held a sit-in before Mallarpur police station in Birbhum district on Saturday even as the 12-hour bandh called by the saffron party to protest the death of a 15-year-old boy in police custody affected normal life in the area.

Khan asserted that his party was not against the entire police force in the state. The BJP MP, however, warned that those "involved in atrocities against opposition workers and common people" and siding with Trinamool Congress won't be spared by his party and the 'Yuva Morcha'.

The BJYM state president alleged that the 15-year-old, who had been charged with a mobile theft was murdered and hanged from the ceiling in cold blood by the police who are now being shielded by the ruling Trinamool Congress.

"We will not rest until the guilty cops are found out and action taken against them. We will be holding demonstration before every police station in the state on November 2, 3, 4 if no action is taken," Khan said.

He alleged that the parents of the boy were kidnapped at gunpoint by police and forced to say before media that their child was not killed but committed suicide.

"We demand the parents make the same announcement before their neighbours," he said alleging that the boy's body was cremated surreptitiously at night by the administration.

Meanwhile, BJP supporters took out a rally in Mallarpur town on Saturday as a dawn-to-dusk shutdown called by the party was in force in the area.

As the rally was stopped by police near the police station, a scuffle broke out between the BJP supporters and policemen who tried to stop them.

Shops and markets remained closed and vehicles did not ply in the area as a strong police force kept a tab on the situation.

The police claimed the teenager was found hanging in the toilet of Mallarpur police station on Thursday night, while the BJP alleged that the law enforcers had beaten him to death as his parents were saffron party supporters.

The teenager's father, however, said he is a TMC supporter and his son died by suicide.

The police said a magisterial probe has been ordered into the incident.

The last rites of the boy were performed at Tarapith burning ghat amid tight police security after the post-mortem examination.

The BJP and some neighbours of the boy claimed he was picked up by the police three days ago.

Superintendent of Police Shyam Singh, however, said that the boy was apprehended on Thursday afternoon on charges of theft and was kept in a separate guarded room at Mallarpur police station.

"Around 9.25 pm, he went to the toilet and hanged himself," the officer said.

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox

Check out all newsletters

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox