Chennai man’s custodial death: Did cops try to cover up incident?

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Highlights

  • A 25-year-old man died allegedly while in police custody
  • The man used to work at a horse stall in Chennai
  • Victim’s family has alleged that they were paid Rs 1 lakh to settle the case

Three Tamil Nadu cops were suspended after a magisterial inquiry was ordered into the alleged custodial death of a 25-year-old V Vignesh who used to offer horse rides at Chennai’s Marina Beach. The case has now been transferred to CB-CID according to TN DGP office. 

According to reports, 25-year-old V Vignesh and one another person Suresh were taken into custody for allegedly possessing machetes and half-kg of ganja while cops were conducting a vehicle check near Kellys at Purasawalkam on Monday night.

The next day, while both of them were having breakfast, Vignesh started throwing up and witnessed seizures. Though cops rushed him to Government Kilpauk Medical College Hospital but he died even after treatment.

According to media reports, Vignesh’s family has alleged that they were paid Rs 1 lakh to pacify and settle the case.

Speaking to The News Minute, Vignesh’s elder brother Vinod said that the family was paid Rs 1 lakh by Vignesh’s employer who told them that he sourced the money from the police.

Further speaking to News Minute, Vinod informed that the police did not give the money directly. Vignesh used to work with one Ranjith in his horse stall… who said your brother has toiled with him a lot. Therefore, he will try to get whatever money from the inspector he can and give it to the family which can be used for cremation.

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He gave us Rs 1 lakh, Vinod said.

Vinod also alleged that cops took Vignesh’s body from Kilpauk hospital mortuary to Kirshnampet crematorium. They insisted that the mortal remains be cremated. 

However, the family objected to it and said according to their rituals, the dead body is buried and not cremated.

But the police did not relent. The family then approached judicial magistrate Yashwantrao Ingersol who asked the police to allow the family to conduct funeral as per their traditions.

While questions are being raised on the conduct of the police to first try to cremate the body and then not allow any person other than Vignesh’s elder and younger brothers to see the body, the Chennai-based activist A Shankar has lodged a complaint with the National Commission for Human Rights seeking a thorough probe.

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