Days after a mob tied 22 year old Tabrez Ansari to an electricity pole, beat him up and allegedly forced him to chant “Jai Shri Ram…Jai Hanuman” after accusing him of committing a theft, died of injuries.
On Saturday morning, Ansari, who was in judicial custody for theft, complained of ill-health and was rushed to Sadar Hospital and then to Tata Main Hospital, Jamshedpur, where he was declared dead on arrival.
Sadar Hospital Civil Surgeon A N Dey said Ansari could have died of a “heart attack or blockage”, but added that the exact cause would be ascertained after post-mortem. Ansari’s family members alleged he died because he was “mercilessly beaten” for four hours.
Police said a case was registered against Ansari under IPC Sections 457 (lurking house-trespass or housebreak by night), 380 (theft), 411 (dishonestly receiving stolen property) and others.
Complainant Kamal Mahto has told police that he and his family members woke up to a sound and found three men on the rooftop of his neighbour’s house around 2 am on June 18. Mahto complained that when they raised an alarm, the three jumped from the roof. Two of them escaped but Ansari hurt his leg and could not run — he hid in a bush where the villagers found him, Mahto has told Indian Express.
The complaint states that the villagers found in Ansari’s possession a motorcycle without a registration number, wallets and a phone later identified as stolen. It says police were informed and Ansari was handed over to them. However, the statement and the FIR do not mention the assault.
On Saturday, when Ansari was rushed to Sadar Hospital, Alam was called there. He claimed that even after Ansari’s death was announced, he was alive. He claimed, “An ECG was done and he was found alive. We asked them to shift him to Tata Main Hospital. Later at TMH, he was finally declared dead.”
Civil Surgeon Dey, however, denied Alam’s claim. “He was dead and an ECG was done to substantiate. We allowed them to take the body to TMH for their satisfaction,” Dey said.
Deputy Commissioner Chaavi Ranjan said that after receiving information about Ansari’s death, he ordered inquest proceedings. “On reaching there, our officer said he was breathing and was being taken to another hospital…We have ordered an inquiry and will find out lapses, if any, on part of the police or doctors.”
Police have lodged a case against the villagers under IPC Sections 302 (murder) and 295 A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religions or religious beliefs), among others. Police said they have arrested one person in this connection so far. SP Karthik S said, “We are investigating the matter as these cases are on a rise these days.”