Dalit Youths in UP Jail Poisoned and Hanged, Magisterial Investigation Reveals Disturbing Details
Sultanpur- In Uttar Pradesh, the bodies of two Dalit community prisoners, who were sent to jail in connection with the murder of a poultry farm owner in Sultanpur District Jail in May, were found hanging in the barrack on June 21. The family members had demanded a high-level investigation into this matter. Shocking revelations have been made in the report of the magisterial investigation conducted in the case.
Injury marks were found on the bodies of both Dalit prisoners. In statements taken by the investigating officer from the panel of doctors who conducted the post-mortem, the doctor has made it clear that both of them had died before June 21. Along with this, they were given poison. Both of them had not eaten anything for 12 hours. There was liquid in their stomachs. Whereas jail officials had claimed that both of them had committed suicide due to depression. But during the investigation, other prisoners stated that they were not depressed at all. Rather, they were joking. In the magisterial inquiry, the officer has held the jail administration guilty.
Poultry farm operator Om Prakash Yadav (48), a resident of Chaudhary Ka Purva Lorikpur village of Jamo police station in Amethi district, was murdered on the night of May 26.
In this case, Jamon police had arrested Kariya alias Vijay Pasi and Manoj Raidas on May 30 and sent them to jail. Both were lodged in Sultanpur district jail. On June 21, the then jail superintendent Umesh Singh had said that both of them committed suicide by hanging themselves from a tree. At the same time, the post-mortem panel had made it clear that both prisoners had died two days ago.
The magisterial inquiry into the incident was handed over to Chief Judicial Magistrate Sapna Tripathi. Apart from five prisoners and prisoners, three hoodie warders, two warders, deceased Manoj's father Rangeelal Raidas, mother Sitarani, deceased Kariya Pasi's brother Ashok Kumar, relative Ravindra Vijay, jailer in-charge Rita Srivastava, Kavita Kumari, sub-jailer Daraksha Bano, post-mortem. It has been revealed that statements of a total of 20 people, including two doctors and Jail Superintendent Umesh Singh, were recorded.
The prison authorities exerted significant efforts to conceal the murders of the two prisoners. Their attempts included concealing the timing of their deaths and providing misleading information during the Chief Judicial Magistrate's (CJM) investigation. Despite repeated demands, the viscera report was not furnished to the investigating CJM. Nevertheless, the truth ultimately surfaced through statements and circumstantial evidence.
During the investigation, when the then CJM Sapna Tripathi gathered statements from the doctors who conducted the post-mortem, a clear revelation emerged: both individuals had died prior to June 21, and evidence suggested poisoning before their demise. The post-mortem findings indicated that there was only liquid in their stomachs, signifying a lack of food or drink for 12 hours before their deaths. It was likely that they were hanged under these conditions. Additionally, the post-mortem report disclosed injuries on their bodies. Despite jail officials asserting that both had committed suicide due to depression, the prisoners, under investigation, emphatically stated that there was no apparent sign of depression and that they were even engaging in jovial conversations.
Furthermore, the prisoners conveyed that neither of the deceased had a sheet. This raised a crucial question: how did they acquire the fabric to hang themselves? The jail officials, under scrutiny during the investigation, have been unable to provide a satisfactory answer to this inquiry.
Amidst the investigation, discrepancies surfaced regarding the prisoners' barracks, as the jail superintendent asserted that no changes had occurred, with the prisoners located in number 19, the bachha barrack, from the outset. However, conflicting statements emerged from In-charge Jailer Kavita Kumari and witness Satyam Singh, who informed the CJM that Manoj and Kariya alias Vijay were initially housed in barrack number 12 before the designation of the Bachha barrack card. According to Satyam Singh, Manoj and Kariya had indicated that their duty was assigned in the canteen.
Furthermore, the investigation uncovered a significant disorder within the jail system, exposing a practice where money was allegedly taken for changing the prisoners' barracks. The CJM acknowledged and documented this revelation in the official report.
In response to the findings, former IPS and National President of Adhikar Sena, Amitabh Thakur, has urgently called for the filing of FIRs against the implicated officers and advocated for a CID-CB investigation into the matter.