statesman news service
Durgapur, 7 July
An iron & steel factory driver&’s mysterious death in Dhanbad police custody and a hurried inquest of the body sparked fury in Durgapur town today.
Badal Dey (48) – hailing from Durgapur Steel Township was called in for questioning by Dhanbad police in Jharkhand last Friday in connection with a highway robbery case.
The family of the deceased driver alleged: “He left home last Friday when he received a call from the Dhanbad police but didn’t return. Yesterday called twice from an unknown number and insisted that he was fine. But today we were told that he was dead.”
The Dhanbad police claimed that Badal committed suicide inside the toilet of the Police Station at 7:05 am today by using his shirt as a noose.
Badal was engaged as a contractual driver two years ago by a secondary steel unit operating in Durgapur industrial zone. On July 3rd last year the car he was driving back to Durgapur from Jhumri Tilaiya in Jharkhand was intercepted by a gang of highway robbers on NH 2 between Mugma & Dhanbad. An accountant of the company Mr Asim Borat was in the car and was carrying cash worth Rs 26.50 lakh. The gangsters looted the cash at gunpoint and fled.
The vice president of the company&’s Jamuria plant, Mr Sanjay Agarwal then lodged a complaint with Dhanbad police.
During investigation, the police suspected that it was an insider job and the driver had possibly tipped off the gang. SP, Dhanbad, Mr Anoop T Mathew told The Statesman today: “We tracked his cell phone and it was revealed that he had interactions with the gangsters and he also had altered his SIM card after the crime.”
He added: “The gangsters were from Durgapur – Asansol area and our investigations establised that the driver was known to them.”
On Thursday Badal – the driver was questioned and released.
According to Mr Tapas Dey, driver&’s son: “Again they called up my father last Friday on the plea that the Dhanbad police officials required to talk to him