Moral policing claims teen life in Kerala

Moral policing claims teen life in Kerala


Moral policing has claimed the life of a teenager at Kollam district in south Kerala. The accused in the case is a jail warder. It is also suspected to be a case of mistaken identity.

Renju Krishnan (18), alias Renjith, was allegedly roughed up by a gang led by the warder, Vineeth, on February 16 at his house at Thekkumbhagam in Kollam city police limits, alleging that he has been having an affair with a girl in the locality.

Renju suffered serious head injuries. He succumbed to the injuries at a hospital in Thiruvananthapuram on Thursday after nearly two weeks of treatment at different hospitals.

The Thekkumbhagom police in Kollam is learnt to have already arrested Vineeth, who was absconding.

Vineeth is warder in a jail in Kollam district. Police sources said he will be charged for murder based on the postmortem report and other medical reports of the deceased.

Renju had earlier told a section of media in Kollam that he had no connection with the said girl. The gang led by Vineeth pulled Renju out of his house and roughed up him in front of his mother and brother. Renju repeatedly told them that he had no relationship with the said girl. But the assault continued.

Renju was rushed to a nearby government hospital and later shifted to a private hospital in Thiruvananthapuram. Later he was shifted to the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College hospital, where he died.

Renju, son of Radhakrishnan and Rajani of Arinallor near Thekkumbhagom, was a student at an Industrial Training Institute at Chandanathoppu in Kollam. He is also survived by a brother, Rahul Krishna.

Meanwhile, there were allegations that the police did not take the complaint by Renju's mother regarding the assault seriously.

Even nearly two weeks after the incident, no serious efforts were taken to arrest the accused. Search for the accused was launched only by Thursday evening after the victim died and the issue snowballed into a controversy.

However, the police said that the case was registered soon after the complaint was received. "In order to take further steps, Renju's statement was necessary. Hence we were waiting for his condition to improve," said the police.

Renju's body was sent for an autopsy on Friday morning at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital.

The police also said that it was not yet sure whether more persons were accused in the case.

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