MEERUT: Seven policemen, including a deputy superintendent of police, have been charged with murder in the horrific custodial torture death of a 35-year-old security guard in Hapur district of Uttar Pradesh. Pradeep Tomar, a security guard, died allegedly after being tortured by cops at a police station in Hapur’s Pilkhuwa area on Sunday evening.
The FIR comes a day after National Human Rights Commission took cognizance of the incident and issued notices to the chief secretary and DGP of the state. The commission has sought the status as well as action taken reports within four weeks. According to police, Pradeep had been summoned to Chijarsi outpost for interrogation in a murder case.
His 10-year-old son, who accompanied him to the outpost, claimed that he was detained and brutally tortured during interrogation. “At least 8-10 policemen were constantly beating my father. They also stabbed him using screwdrivers. All this while, they were also consuming alcohol and denied water to my father who was writhing in pain,” he said.
After his condition deteriorated, the cops rushed him to a local hospital in Hapur and later to a higher centre in Meerut where he succumbed to the torture inflicted on him, the family claimed.
The postmortem report has also corroborated the claims of torture. “The cause of death has not been specified in the report. Viscera sample has been preserved for further analysis. There is blackening on his posterior, arm and contusion on other parts of the body,” Hapur SP Yeshveer Singh said.
The deceased’s younger brother, Kuldeep Tomar, had submitted a written complaint alleging torture at the hands of DSP Santosh Mishra, Pilkhuwa SHO Yogesh Baliyan, sub-inspector Ajab Singh and four other unnamed policemen leading to his brother’s death. While SHO Baliyan, SI Singh and a constable are already under suspension, DSP Mishra was merely transferred and put in-charge of Garhmukteshwar circle.
According to Hapur police, Pradeep, who used to work as a security personnel with a private factory in Ghaziabad, was picked up for interrogation as he was suspected of being in touch with accused of a murder case.
“The charred body of a woman was recovered on August 30. The woman was later identified as Preeti, a resident of Jarcha in Noida and relative of Pradeep. Preeti was allegedly murdered by one Arun, who is also a relative of Pradeep. He was not directly linked to the murder but could have been part of the conspiracy,” Hapur ASP Sarvesh Mishra said.
Ever since the incident, police had maintained that the victim’s family had not approached them with a written complaint and hence no FIR was registered.