Cuttack: Puri police informed Monday the Orissa High Court that the state government has sanctioned Rs 5,00,000 as interim compensation to the family of the person who was allegedly killed in custody by the district police as per the HC’s order. Puri SP Kanwar Vishal Singh in a counter affidavit informed the HC that the parents of K Ramesh, the dead person, are not in police custody. They have not been into any forced confinement and there are no allegations that they have been subjected to any misbehaviour, ill treatment or threatening. Earlier there were allegations that K Ramesh was beaten brutally inside the station by policemen.
Denying the allegations made in the rejoinder affidavit of petitioner Sarat Kumar Rayguru, who had filed a PIL, the SP informed that all procedural steps for inquiry into the death are being scrupulously followed as per the guidelines of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).
The NHRC has registered a case in this connection. It has appointed special rapporteur (East Zone) Vinod Aggarwal, a retired IAS officer to make a visit to the place of the incident, enquire and submit a report within four weeks, the SP’s affidavit said.
Apart from NHRC’s inquiry two other independent and impartial inquiries are currently on into the death of K Ramesh, the SP informed. He added that while a local judicial magistrate is conducting a judicial inquiry, the district Human Rights Protection Cell (HRPC) headed by a DSP is probing the incident.
The HC has fixed January 28 for further hearing in the case, the sources said.
K Ramesh, a 30-year-old local youth was picked up by Puri police November 18 in connection with some criminal cases pending against him. But, he was taken to the district hospital where doctors declared him dead the next day. Ramesh was stated to have injury marks on his body. Without informing his family, policemen cremated his body at Swarga Dwara in Puri at midnight.
The alleged custodial death had evoked widespread protests from different quarters. The Opposition had raised the issue in the Odisha assembly.