Wednesday, February 03, 2010

IPS officer fined for aiding' loot, torture

TNN, 4 February 2010, 05:53am IST

KOLKATA: Batons rule, but not always. If Bhikhari Paswan's mysterious disappearance from police custody is a blemish on the state of human rights
in West Bengal, here is another incident that can set the record straight.

An IPS officer will have to shell out Rs 64,000 from his pocket as compensation to a village woman in Murshidabad for raiding her house with a gang of anti-socials who looted the house and tortured her.

The recommendation comes from the West Bengal Human Rights Commission. More importantly, the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee government has accepted the recommendation that governments seldom do.

The Murshidabad torture dates back to August 2,000. Rajesh Kumar Singh, the IPS officer, was then the sub-divisional police officer (SDPO) of Kandi, 30 km from Behrampore. Three days after the incident, victims Janatan Bibi and five others from Natungram village in Kandi lodged a complaint with the West Bengal Human Rights Commission (WBHRC). In her complaint, the victims alleged that the SDPO forced into her house with anti-socials, looted the articles including gold ornaments, abused them in "filthy language" and there was even some action that may well be termed as molestation.

Departmental proceedings are on against Singh now the Commandant Ist Battalion in the State Armed Police, Barrackpore. The accused officer has pleaded to the government not to ask him pay the damages before the departmental proceedings get are over.

The government may allow him that but is not in a mood to give him a go by for reasons more than one. Records reveal that this IPS officer of the 1997 batch was also involved in the police brutality in the forest hamlets of West Midnapore such as Chhotopelia, a day after the Maoist ambush on the chief minister's convoy in November 2008.

The incident sparked off the tribal uprising in the Jangalmahal that was later taken over by the Maoists

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