Plea filed before NHRC seeking justice over ‘custodial death’ in Odisha

Bhubaneswar/New Delhi:  A human rights activist knocked the doors of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) seeking a directive the Chief Secretary of Odisha to pay Rs 30 lakh compensation to the next kin of a 38-year-old man who mysteriously died at the Udala Police Station.

Human Rights Activist Himansu Sekhar Nayak also requested the NHRC to ask the Chief Secretary to send the proof of compensation details to the commission within three weeks.

He also requested the NHRC to direct Principal Secretary to Home Department of the Govt. of Odisha for Judicial Magisterial probe into this incident and submit the details.

DGP, Odisha must be asked for Crime Branch probe into this case and to submit an Action Taken Report before NHRC.

As per reports, the 38-year-old man allegedly involved in theft died under mysterious circumstances at Udala police station in Mayurbhanj district, with his family claiming he was tortured in police custody leading to his death. The deceased was identified as Pradip Kumar Das of Mandarpur village within Remuna police limits in Balasore district.

Udala police had arrested Pradip from Remuna in the evening of 7th May 2022 for his alleged involvement in a jewelery theft case. Alleging that Pradip died due to torture in custody, hundreds of people from Remuna staged protest in front of Udala police station.

Brother Radhakanta Das said Udala police arrested Pradip when he was standing at a tea stall near Remuna Golei. He had gone to meet his brother on the morning of 8th May 2022, but was told that he succumbed during treatment in Udala hospital.

According to the Police, two miscreants looted jewelery worth lakhs of rupees from one Niranjan Sahu’s house in Udala town. Basing on his FIR, Udala police registered a case and in the course of investigation, found that Pradip was involved in the burglary.

During interrogation, Pradip admitted that he was involved in the case. However, he fell sick at around 2 pm and police immediately took him to Udala hospital. But he died during treatment. However, family members claimed that Pradip was fit and fine and had no health issues whatsoever. He was picked up by the Udala police and thrashed at the station leading to his untimely death. He was working as a night guard at Balasore Water supply department.

Reports added the victim’s body had received several injury marks, the deceased’s family alleged.

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