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Telangana: Probe ordered after outrage over custodial death of labourer

Death of 35-year-old Mohammad Khadeer Khan following custodial torture has come as a major embarrassment for the BRS government in the state.

Anindita Chowdhury | Hyderabad |


Telangana DGP Anjani Kumar has ordered a probe into the custodial death of 35-year-old Mohammad Khadeer Khan, a labourer who was allegedly kept in illegal custody and tortured for five days by the Medak police following wide-spread outrage.

The death following custodial torture has come as a major embarrassment for the BRS Government in the state. Use of facial recognition software by the Telangana Police has also come under criticism following the death.

Khadeer Khan was picked up by police from Yakutpura in Hyderabad on 29 January in connection with a chain snatching case, apparently because his facial features matched with that of the culprit. He was thrashed so badly that his kidneys were severely damaged and also his spinal cord was dislocated. He was kept in custody for five days till 2 February but police asked him to sign a paper stating that he was in custody overnight.

Badly hurt, he was unable to sign. So, somebody else signed for him. He was then kept under house arrest. Finally, he somehow got admitted to a Medak hospital and when local media raised a hue and cry, he was brought to Hyderabad for treatment.

Khadeer Khan eventually succumbed to his injuries at Gandhi Hospital on 17 February. The video footage of his statement, while undergoing treatment in Medak, had gone viral where he named sub inspector Rajasekhar and constables Prashant and Pawan.

There was widespread outrage and condemnation of the death due to custodial torture. While the SI was transferred to District Crime Records Bureau, the constables were transferred to Papannapet and Regode police stations respectively.

Later, the DGP ordered an investigation by a senior officer of Kamareddy district. “The IGP will supervise the investigation. Disciplinary action initiated against the inspector and sub inspector,” read the statement from DGP’s office.

Khadeer Khan’s wife lodged a complaint against the accused policemen demanding their removal from service and awarding a compensation amount of Rs 50,000.

The AIMIM has also stepped in and an FIR was registered against the policemen. AIMIM MLA Kausar Mohiuddin met the SP of Medak for proper investigation. He also met the collector of Medak to ensure compensation of Rs 50 lakh and 2 bedroom house for the family.