TN CM says govt will ask for CBI probe into Sathankulam custodial deaths

The Tamil Nadu government on Sunday stated that they will be approaching the Madras High Court to ask that the case concerning custodial deaths of a father and son in Thoothukudi district be handed over to the CBI for investigation.

The Thoothukudi police have so far only suspended three persons in connection to these deaths — Inspector Sridhar and two sub-inspectors Balakrishnan and Raghuganesh. 

The government has come under much criticism for not directing the police department to file an FIR against sub inspectors Balakrishnan, Raghuganesh and Inspector Sridhar who have been accused by multiple witnesses of torturing the two men who were arrested on June 19.

“The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court has taken suo-motu cognisance of this case. The Tamil Nadu government has decided that CBI should investigate this case. When this case comes for hearing in the court, we will take permission from the bench and hand over the case to the CBI,” Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami told the media in Salem on Sunday.

Jayaraj and his son Bennix were arrested by the Sathankulam police on the evening of June 19 evening for allegedly violating lockdown regulations. While Jayaraj was first taken to the police station first, Bennix soon reached there to enquire about his father. Friends and family who are outside the police station have all confirm that the duo were beaten up mercilessly inside the police station. The case of torture became a matter of national outrage after it was revealed that it the police had also inflicted sexual torture on the father and son. 

It is not just the role of police that has come under the scanner. The doctor who gave the fitness certificate and the magistrate who demanded the duo have also come under much criticism and there have been many demands that they too must be investigated.

Speaking to the media after the Chief Minister’s announcement, the family of the deceased father and son, stated that they will first wait for the court’s pronouncements on Tuesday regarding the case before commenting any further on the matter.