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Custodial death: HC says no need to monitor probe

Custodial death: HC says no need to monitor probe

The Gujarat High Court today disposed of a petition filed in the case of alleged custodial death of a 32-year-old man of Patel community during the reservation stir, saying there was no need for the court to monitor the case when CIDhas taken over probe into it.

Justice JB Pardiwala disposed of the petition filed by Prabhaben, mother ofSwetang Patel who died allegedly in custody after being caught by the police during the quota violence, while giving direction to the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) that it should carry out a thorough investigation in the case.

The court said there was no need for it to monitor the investigation that was being carried out by CID.

Observing that prima facie it was a case of homicide, the HC had last week directed the administration to file an FIR and also ordered a CID probe into Swetang’s death.

The state today submitted before the HC that the probe has been handed over to CID and an FIR has also been registered in the case.

Government pleader Mitesh Amin also informed the court that the police has recorded statements of Swetang’s mother and sister and investigation has begun.

Advocate Tarak Damani, appearing for Swetang’s mother, submitted that there were some lacunae in the FIR.

The HC said that if the complainant finds any lacunae at any stage then the court can be approached in future.

The court also ordered the police to hand over the postmortem reports to the complainant.

Earlier, the High Court had directed the police to carry out second autopsy of the body.

In her plea, Swetang’s mother demanded setting up of a special investigation team (SIT) to investigate the death of her son.

Prabhaben had alleged in the court that her son was beaten up by the police following which he succumbed to the injuries.

She had said that her son was in the house at around 10.30 PM on August 25 when a few police officers entered their housing society, broke the windscreens of cars and other vehicles parked in the society and forcibly took away Swetang and four other persons who were sleeping.

“Swetang was one of the five persons who was picked up by the police in the night. He was mercilessly beaten up on the main road and thereafter he was taken to Bapunagar police station,” she had said.

“At Bapunagar police station also he was mercilessly beaten up. The boy complained of excruciating pain, but the same was ignored by the police officers. Ultimately, he succumbed to the injuries,” the deceased’s mother further alleged.

The agitation by Patel community seeking reservation under OBC status turned violent after the detention of their leader Hardik Patel on August 25. Ten people died in the violence, including Swetang.

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