Puri: A woman of Talada under Kakatpur police limits Wednesday complained to Puri superintendent of police (SP) here that her husband was tortured in custody by police leading to his death.
Complainant Pratima Das said Astarang police had implicated her husband Jogendra Das, 40, in a bogus case and arrested him. The cops also beat up Jogendra at the police station following which he was rushed to SCB Medical College and Hospital at Cuttack where he succumbed to injuries Wednesday, Pratima alleged.
She said her husband was called to cook for a community dinner October 30 to mark immersion ceremony of Gajalaxmi. “Some of the organisers of the feast who had nursed a grudge against Jogendra prevailed upon police to arrest him in a fake case. Accordingly, he was picked from his friend’s place November 14,” she said in the complaint.
She further alleged Jogendra’s health deteriorated owing to the physical and mental torture meted out to him in the custody.
“However, despite his deteriorating conditions, police produced him before the court instead of taking him to the hospital,” she rued.
Police said, acting upon a complaint lodged by villager Urmila Nayak, Astarang police registered a case (91/18) under Sections 341, 323, 325, 294, 506, 379 and 34 of the IPC against 10 persons, including Jogendra, and arrested him before producing him in the court November 15.
Pratima, meanwhile, alleged Jogendra was taken to SCB after he walked out on bail Tuesday and died at 7 am Wednesday. “I urge the authorities to take action again the person upon whose complaint my husband was arrested,” she said.
Meanwhile, angered over the incident, Talada villagers staged a road blockade by placing Jogendra’s body near Astarang College Square Wednesday afternoon and demanded financial aid to the next of kin of the deceased and immediate transfer of Astarang IIC.
The road blockade was, however, removed at 3pm after Nimapara SDPO and Astaranga tehsildar intervened and Pratima handed over the memorandum.
When asked, Astarang IIC declined to comment on the issue.
Meanwhile, investigating officer Sanatana Khuntia dubbed the allegations as baseless. “We haven’t arrested Jogendra November 14. He was arrested November 15 and forwarded to court the same day. He might have died due to some health-related complications,” Khuntia said.
Superintendent of Police Sarthak Sarangi also brushed aside the allegations of custodial torture.