Tortured for 3 Days in Illegal Custody and Petrol Poured in Rectum: Jharkhand HC Orders Cops to Pay Rs. 5 Lakh to Adivasi Farmer

The Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha, which has been following Anil Singh's case and conducted a fact-finding investigation presented before officials and the media, however, says justice isn't served as the guilty police officials haven't been punished. The activists demand the termination of the erring cops and additional compensation of 5 lakh rupees.
Anil recounts receiving "300-400 lathi blows" in the police station and losing consciousness due to the severe beating.
Anil recounts receiving "300-400 lathi blows" in the police station and losing consciousness due to the severe beating.

Ranchi- The Jharkhand High Court has ordered a compensation of Rs. 5 lakh to Anil Singh, an Adivasi farmer from Kuku village in Garu, Barwadih block of Latehar, for the severe police brutality he endured.

The incident dates back to February 23, 2022, when Anil Singh was brutally beaten by the Garu Police Station officials under the false accusation of aiding Maoists.

Anil was brutally beaten by the Garu police station in-charge and two other policemen, and was illegally detained in the police station for three days. Under the false accusation of aiding Maoists, he was subjected to inhumane physical and mental torture.

After a long legal and grassroots struggle, on June 22, 2024, the Jharkhand High Court ordered a compensation of Rs. 5 lakh to Anil Singh and directed that this amount be recovered from the guilty police officers.

The Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha, which has been following Anil Singh's case and conducted a fact-finding investigation presented before officials and the media, however, says justice isn't served as the guilty police officials haven't been punished. The activists demand the termination of the erring cops.

Not only was Anil Singh brutally beaten, but after the beating, the police station in-charge inserted petrol into his rectum. The next day, the police forcibly took his blood-soaked pants and underwear.
Not only was Anil Singh brutally beaten, but after the beating, the police station in-charge inserted petrol into his rectum. The next day, the police forcibly took his blood-soaked pants and underwear.

Anil Singh, 42, recalls the horrifying night when he was picked up by the police at midnight, along with a few other villagers. He recounts receiving "300-400 lathi blows" in the police station and losing consciousness due to the severe beating.

Anil Singh identifies the Garu Thana Prabhari (station in-charge) Ranjit Kumar as the primary perpetrator of the violence, who later apologized the following morning, admitting it was a mistake.

Not only was Anil Singh brutally beaten, but after the beating, the police station in-charge inserted petrol into his rectum. The next day, the police forcibly took his blood-soaked pants and underwear. On February 24, he was also presented before the Superintendent of Police, but once the matter became public, the Superintendent reportedly, outright denied any knowledge of the incident.

The Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha conducted a detailed fact-finding investigation into this case and presented the findings to the government and media.

Due to the lack of active investigation and action from the local police, Anil Singh took the case to the Jharkhand High Court. Following a long and arduous legal battle, a complaint was finally registered against the SHO and other involved police officers several months later.

Notably, after the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha raised this issue, the Chief Minister took cognizance of the violence and ordered the Jharkhand police to take action.

Despite this, the police have consistently tried to protect the guilty officers. Sufficient action has not yet been taken against the culprits by the police.

On June 22, 2024, the court ruled in favor of Anil Singh, ordering the compensation and directing that the amount be recovered from the guilty police officers.

This case once again highlights how Adivasis fall victim to state repression and how difficult it is for their families to obtain justice. Filing just one FIR against the guilty police and security forces is a long struggle.

The Mahasabha has been continuously fighting for justice in this matter. Alina Horo, a member of the Mahasabha stated they welcome the High Court's decision and salutes the efforts of all the villagers and social activists who supported Anil Singh, as well as the commitment of the lawyers who handled the case in the local and High Court. However, this justice is partial.

Speaking with The Mooknayak, Alina stated, "The compensation of Rs. 5 lakh is very inadequate considering the immense pain and torture Anil suffered at the hands of the police. Moreover, no action has been taken against the responsible police officials, which is deeply disturbing. We are pursuing the case and demanding their termination. Anil is still physically suffering from the incident and struggles to survive with his family on a meager income from his small agricultural field. He deserves a compensation of Rs. 10 lakh."

"This case highlights the systemic oppression faced by Adivasi communities and the immense difficulty in obtaining justice for them," said Lalmohan Kherwar and Siraj, from the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha. "Not only was Anil Singh brutally beaten, but the subsequent attempts by the police to cover up the incident and protect the guilty officers are alarming."

Activists and the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha are now demanding the immediate dismissal of the guilty police officials and further punitive actions against them. They argue that the Rs. 5 lakh compensation is insufficient and have called for an increased amount of Rs. 10 lakh to be awarded to Anil Singh.

The case has drawn significant attention to the challenges faced by Adivasi communities in Jharkhand, shedding light on the recurring issue of police brutality and the arduous journey toward justice.

The Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha continues to urge for comprehensive reforms and stringent actions to prevent such incidents in the future.

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