COVID-19: Five policemen arrested over death of father, son

The Indian Police on Thursday said five policemen had been arrested in Southern India for the death of a father and son arrested for keeping their shop open in violation of Covid-19 lockdown rules.

NAN reports that the man who goes by the name P. Jeyaraj and his son Emmanuel Bennicks were arrested on June 19 in the town of Sathankulam in Tamil Nadu State on charges of keeping their mobile phone shop open beyond stipulated hours.

According to reports, both the father and his son died in the hospital within two days of their release.

The family of the deceased also alleged that the two died after they were brutally tortured in police custody.

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The police while reacting to the incident initially transferred four of its officials and later suspended two men linked with the case but no charges were filed against them.

The incident and initial police reaction which sparked widespread protests had prompted a local court to step in.

However, the Madras High Court on Tuesday ruled that there were sufficient grounds based on the autopsy report to charge the policemen involved in the custodial death with murder.

The court also told authorities to provide protection to a policewoman who testified as a witness that the men had been tortured at the police station.

The I-G, K. Shankar, also told newsmen that five police personnel had been arrested so far and that investigation was ongoing.

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