In an alleged case of police brutality in Chennai, a 22-year-old was beaten up by a sub-inspector for not paying bribe when caught without driving license. The victim, Muhammad Haroon Sait, took to Facebook to narrate his ordeal with the local police on his way back home in the late hours of July 19. Sait alleged that he was manhandled by sub-inspector M H Ilayaraja, who slapped and hit him with a stick repeatedly, as five other constables stood and watched without intervening.
The accused police officer has been suspended and a deputy commissioner rank officer-in-charge of Kilpauk area has been appointed for departmental inquiry and further action into the matter.
Sait, in his post, accused Ilayaraja of demanding a bribe from two of his friends and also thrashing him up ruthlessly. His friends conceded to pay the amount as they could not produce their driving license in the said routine checking on the Spurtank road. However, he was roughed up for refusing to pay the same. Sait claimed that he had the photo copy of the driving license and not the original document. “The sub-inspector insisted on me producing the original copy, by which he was indirectly harassing me and compelling me to pay a bribe like my friends did,” he said in his Facebook post.
The boy further alleged that he was forcibly taken to the police station despite him agreeing to submit his vehicle, which he would collect in the morning after producing his original RC book. He claimed that his phone was seized to prevent him from contacting his family and was not provided any medical aid. Sait suffered injuries on his left wrist, which was ‘severly swollen’, and other parts of the body.
The boys were also harassed by other officers at the police station from where they were rescued only after a relative arrived at the police station, followed by Sait’s father and his cousins. The victim was then taken to a nearby hospital where the doctor told them that it was the second case of police brutality in the past few days.
The ordeal did not end here, as the police came to the hospital and attempted to convince the victim to not file a case in the matter. Sait, in his post further expressed his fears that his medical reports may be tampered with. Despite threats and cajoling by the police, the family firmly stood its ground in demanding that a case be filed and action taken against the accused.