A 30-year-old man has been booked for abetting suicide of a moral policing victim, who was found hanging from a tree near his house in Kerala’s Palakkad district on Thursday. Aneesh, 24, had been depressed since a five-member gang had assaulted him and his friend on a Kollam beach on Valentine’s Day. The visuals of the assault had gone viral. The police have recovered a suicide note in which Aneesh has blamed Dhaneesh Ramesh, 30, for his death. Ramesh had filmed the assault.
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Kollam’s Mata Amritanandamayi mutt had adopted Aneesh, who belonged to a poor backward community, after his primary school. Aneesh worked at a hospital in Kollam district after completing an Ayurveda course. He had been associated with the mutt’s social welfare activities and computer literacy programmes particularly in his home district of Palakkad. Mutt staffer R Baby said that Aneesh lost his job after the moral policing incident. He said that he felt insulted after the visuals of the moral policing were circulated. “At hospital many recognized him and this seems to have dejected him,’’ said Baby.
Aneesh neighbour, Murukesh, said that he rarely talked or stepped out of his house after returning from Kollam. “A few days back, he told me that he was blamed for immoral activity. He said he was made a victim for a crime which has not taken place. Everyone started viewing him against the backdrop of this incident,’’ said Murukesh. He added that Aneesh seemed to under threat from the assailants.
Aneesh lived with his mother, Latha, and elder brother, Ajeesh, at Agali. His father, Gopalakrishnan, lives separately. Latha works as a daily wager while Ajeesh runs a two-wheeler workshop.
Aneesh’s friend was humiliated when she had gone to relieve herself in shrubs near the beach, which has no toilet facilities. The assailants attacked Aneesh when he was waiting for her and objected when they stalked the woman. They molested her and called three of their friends. Aneesh was assaulted when he intervened.
One of the assailants is heard making obscene remarks while Aneesh is seen pleading with them. But the gang continued to assault him.
Aneesh had filed a police complaint when the visuals were circulated leading to the arrest of the five: Ramesh, 30, Abhilash, 33, Biju, 42, Gireesh, 29 and Aneesh, 31. The accused are in judicial custody. “They are daily wage workers. None of them have any criminal background. The same beach had witnessed a moral policing attack three years back. Since then, local people were not involved in any such incidents, except this one,’’ said a police source. The five would face charges under the IT Act as well.
The Kerala State Human Rights Commission separately on Friday registered a suo motu case in connection with the suicide. K Mohandas, an member of the panel, said that the police should intervene to prevent social media misuse.