Man Thrashed for Theft & Arrested by Delhi Police Dies, Probe On
“One of Salman’s hands was broken in two places and there was blood all over his body,” his brother Danish says.
After being thrashed by locals who accused him of stealing a vehicle on the intervening night of 10 and 11 November, 25-year-old Salman, alias Mesar, who was arrested by the Delhi Police, died at a Delhi hospital on the night of 11 November.
Salman’s 21-year-old brother Danish alleges that this is a case of custodial death and argues why he was not allowed to see his brother or even talk to him once. The Delhi Police has on the other hand issued a statement stating that Salman was beaten up by locals when he was caught red-handed stealing a tempo. A judicial inquiry has been ordered into his death, the police has said. Salman’s family has many grievances. As they wait outside the GTB Hospital in Dilshad Garden, he tells The Quint how he got to know of his brother’s arrest and death in less than a day.
Further to the story published in The Quint, a rejoinder sent by Delhi Police Public Relations Officer Dr Eish Singhal (IPS) is being reproduced as it is and the original story is being republished.
‘Why Didn’t They Let Me See Him?’
“While I was selling vegetables on 11 November, I got a call from the police station around 2:30 pm. They told me that my brother was arrested in a case of theft. When I reached the Welcome police station, they told me my brother was at the court or in the bathroom, they kept me waiting but I was not allowed to see him or speak to him. I bought a juice from a shop closeby, anticipating that he may not have eaten anything. However, I never had a chance to give it to my brother. A day later he died,” Danish told The Quint.
Sitting along with Danish are Salman’s wife Parveen and two daughters, one four-years-old and another two-months-old. They’ve just been told that they will only get the body on 13 November and are reluctantly going back home. They are all shattered, still processing their loss.
Coming back to what happened the previous day, Danish returned from the police station without seeing his brother. Hoping he would get to see him the next day, he got another call early morning a day later.
“Someone called me early morning and asked if Salman was my brother. They asked me to come to the GTB hospital and get his wife along. I reached here at 6:00 am and at 7:00 am we were shown his body and told he was dead. One of his hands was broken in two places and there was blood all over his body.”
When asked if he has any images of the injuries on his body, Danish said he did not have the time to get a camera phone arranged and click the photos.
“Even if my brother made a mistake, won’t you give them the space to make his case or make amends for his mistakes? How did he die?” his brother asks.
The Police Responds, Inquiry Ordered
The Station House Officer of Welcome Police station confirmed that the case was from his police station but refuses to address comments about the man’s death. “Please talk to senior police officials regarding this case,” he said. The Quint reached out to Delhi Police Additional PRO Anil Mittal who issued a statement detailing what happened.
The police said that on the night of 10 and 11 November, they got a PCR call at 2:49 am with the information that a man had been caught at 100-ft road Kabir Nagar which falls under the Welcome police station. When the concerned police officials reached the spot, the complainant called Hira Lal Kamra showed up with Salman, stating that he was caught red-handed stealing his tempo after which he was beaten by the public.
The police says that when they saw Salman, he had injuries on his body. He was immediately sent to Jag Pravesh Chander Hospital, Sastri Park and his MLC was prepared.
An FIR was registered against Salman on Hira Lal’s complaint. He was formally arrested, produced in front of a magistrate and sent to the Mandoli Jail on 11 November itself. There, he was checked by a doctor who referred him to the Hedgewar Hospital. Salman died around 12 midnight.
Delhi Police’s Rejoinder
The rejoinder by Delhi Police Public Relations Officer Dr Eish Singhal reproduced as it is (unedited):
This is with reference to the above-mentioned byline news item, which appeared in your esteemed news web portal, today. It is found to be factually incorrect based on wholly unverified sources and purely conjectural imagination.
The brief fact of the case are that on 11/11/2020 at 2:49 AM, a PCR call reporting that an auto lifter has been caught at Gali No.1, Tyagi Traders, Kabir Nagar in the jurisdiction of PS Welcome, Delhi was received at PS Welcome, North East Distt. The PCR call was lodged vide DD No. 10A Dt. 11/11/2020 PS Welcome and was entrusted to SI Amit Kumar for necessary action. The Investigation Officer along with Ct. Parvinder No. 1076/NE reached the scene of crime i.e. 100 Foota Road towards Durgapuri Chowk, Gali No. 1, Near Tyagi Traders, Kabir Nagar, Delhi. The caller namely Heera Lal Kamra S/o Lt. Sh. Khem Chand Kamra R/o A-198, G.No. 5, Kabir Nagar, Delhi, Age-approx. 40 yrs, alongwith 5-7 persons, was found present at the spot. The complainant produced one boy, who was later identified as Mesar @ Salman S/o Tullan R/o Sahaswan, Afzalpur, Chhaganpur, Badaun, UP, age 24 yrs, in an injured condition.
On enquiry, Heera Lal Kamra stated that at 2:30 AM he found Mesar @ Salman trying to steal his tempo bearing no. DL-1MA-1717 following which he immediately pulled him out of his tempo in order to stop him. He further added that Mesar, in an attempt to escape, scuffled with him, upon which he raised an alarm, screaming “Chor Chor”. In the meantime 5-7 passers-by gathered there and battered Mesar.
The Investigation Officer immediately sent Mesar to Jag Parvesh Chandra Hospital, Shashtri Park, Delhi for treatment in custody of Ct. Parvinder No. 1076/NE. The injured was treated vide MLC No. 4744/2020 Dt. 11/10/2020 at Jag Parvesh Chandra Hospital, Shashtri Park, Delhi. Patient stated himself before doctor that he was beaten by public. The same was also mentioned in MLC by the doctor.
The Investigation Officer recorded the statement of Sh. Heera Lal Kamra S/o Lt. Sh. Khem Chand Kamra R/o A-198, G.No. 5, Kabir Nagar, Delhi and a case vide FIR No. 547/20 u/s 379/411 IPC PS Welcome has been registered. The master key used in the commission of the theft of the tempo has been seized from the possession of accused Mesar @ Salman. One Aadhar Card, Driving License and one Samsung mobile phone has also been seized from the personal search of accused. It had come to notice that the accused has got his aadhar card in the name of Mesar and Driving License in the name of Salman.
On interrogation he disclosed that he attempted the theft of this vehicle at the instance of a person namely Rashid R/o near Mazar, Mustafabad, Loni, UP.
The accused was produced in the court of Sh. Mayank Mittal, Ld. MM. KKD Court. Ld. MM. remanded him JC for 14 days. After that the accused was handed over to jail authority, Mandoli Jail, Jail No 15.
Later on, the accused was sent from Mandoli Jail to Hedgewar Hospital for further treatment. During the treatment, he died in the hospital.Further, legal action is being taken into the matter.In view of the facts elucidated above, it is requested that this rejoinder may be taken into consideration and be published with equal prominence for your esteemed readers in the right prospective.
As a clarification to Delhi Police’s rejoinder, The Quint would like to place on record that the original story carried an over 200-word response by the Delhi Police, which contains the crux of this rejoinder when the story was first published. This reporter published the version of the Delhi Police as well as the deceased’s brother who she corresponded with several times in the day.
(The story was republished on 13 November with the rejoinder issued by Delhi Police.)
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