Tuticorin cops in another tussle , took 28-year-old weeks before Jayaraj-Beniks, he returned with brain damage, died

Tuticorin cops in another tussle , took 28-year-old weeks before Jayaraj-Beniks, he returned with brain damage, died

Just days after the deaths of Jayaraj and Beniks in police custody, yet another case of police brutality comes to light from Tuticorin district which involves the same officials who were involved in the killings of the father-son duo.

A 28-year-old man named Mahendran was forcefully taken by Sathankulam Sub Inspector Raghu Ganesh and his team from the residence of his maternal grandmother in the wee hours of May 23. What was his mistake? Mahendran’s elder brother Durai, 35, was one of the nine suspects in a murder case and was not found. Raghu Ganesh and his team took Mahendran into custody to get to Durai.

Perumal, Mahendran’s maternal uncle said, “They had removed the number plate in the front and back of the car they came in, Raghu Ganesh had a gun with him and was in mufti. They caught Mahendran and said only after your brother surrenders will you be released and they took him from his grandmother’s place. They released him only the following night. When Mahendran came home he was really weak and was not able to move one side was his body.”

His family has alleged although Mahendran came home on May 24, he was not himself. Vadivu, Mahendran’s mother, a physically challenged woman, said, “He was not able to move his hand and leg on one side, and I kept asking him what happened to him. He kept asking me to keep quiet.”

The mother breaks down thinking of her young son as she recollects how her mother Mahendran’s grandmother informed her when the police had picked Mahendran and hit him in front of the grandmother. The cops had even asked her to “forget about her grandson”.

Vadivu, a hearing impaired woman was completely dependent on her younger son Mahendran, and she recalls the two weeks she waited in hope of Mahendran’s recovery. “I saw that he was very unwell and was not even able to drink water even, then I took him to the hospital in Tuticorin and there they scanned his head and said there was sudden infractions in the head. I admitted him to the hospital on Thursday and on Saturday he died.”

The mother sobs recollecting the pain that her son suffered in the last few days of his life. Vadivu says that her son was innocent, a man with no prior records of crime. “Though I repeatedly asked him what happened. He just kept quiet. When he returned from the station he was extremely hurt. They forcefully took him away from my mother’s place,” says Mahendran’s mother.

Mahendran was a daily wage labourer and with the pandemic putting them out of work the family was struggling to make ends meet. After two weeks of suffering at home and three more days in the hospital, the 28-year-old man lost the battle. The MRI report of the youngster showed that he had suffered acute left MCA territory infract and thrombosis (meaning clotting) in the brain.

Doctors say during a cerebrovascular accident can cause the brain damages Mahendran suffered and which in turn leads to the observation made by the family partial paralysis of one side, inability to swallow or eat, weakness, and other symptoms.

The family recalls how the hospital denied performing a post-mortem on Mahendran’s body and took away their only hope to know what happened to him. “We wanted a post-mortem to be done but they said there are coronavirus cases and asked us to take him away. So we brought his body back and buried him,” said the family.

Vadivu is not ready to let her son’s death go away, her only demand is justice. On June 20, Vadivu accompanied by the village president had approached the Tuticorin SP. Vadivu’s lawyer Dr. Ramaswamy, a Supreme Court lawyer says, “The mother took the petition and along with the local president went to the SP of Tuticorin and the SP refused to listen. She lost her son and just days after Jayaraj and Beniks lost their lives.”

Vadivu tried approaching the SP for getting justice for her sons Mahendran who was killed in the police brutality and Durai, whom she says is innocent and has been falsely charged. When the SP refused to meet her, she tried approaching the Tuticorin collector and that too didn’t work as expected and finally, Vadivu approached the court.