IRAC demands judicial inquiry and compensation over custodial death of a 35-year-old tribal in Maharashtra

On 11 October 2021, the Ingenious Rights Advocacy Centre (IRAC) has moved the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) against the custodial death of a 35-year-old tribal man identified as Bhim Kale,a Phase Pardhi tribal, due to alleged torture in illegal police custody at Vijapur Naka police station in Solapur district, Maharashtra on 3 October 2021.

Bhim Kale, a farm labourer, was arrested by the police on 18 September 2021 and illegally detained for almost a week at Vijapur Naka police station in Solapur district.The police falsely accused him as a history-sheeter and alleged that Bhim was involved in a house burglary case.

Bhim Kale was produced before the court only on 23 September 2021. Police allegedly tortured him during illegal custody at the Vijapur Naka police station to extract confessions.It is alleged that Bhim’s both legs were broken as he was beaten up badly in the police custody. When his wife, Swati, met him at Vijapur Naka police station, Bhim was allegedly bleeding from his leg and writhing in pain. He later died in hospital. The deceased is survived by his wife Swati and seven children.

IRAC demanded the immediate intervention of the National Human Rights Commission by taking the following measures:

  • Direct the state government of Maharashtra to order a judicial inquiry into the custodial death of Bhim Kale in police custody at Vijapur Naka police stationin Solapur district and submit a report to the Commission within four weeks;
  • Direct the state government of Maharashtra to arrest all the accused police personnel and prosecute them under the relevant sections of the IPC and the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act, 1989;
  • Direct the state government of Maharashtra to pay an interim compensation of Rs 10 lakhs to the next of kin of the deceased;
  • Direct the state government of Maharashtra to take full responsibilities for the education of the deceased’s seven children and provide other necessary facilities to the family;

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