Chennai: Chennai city police commissioner S. George on Wednesday placed Neelankarai inspector R. Pushapraj under suspension and ordered a case to be registered against him under section 338 of IPC for accidentally firing at a teenaged suspect and seriously injuring him during interrogation.
The city police chiefâs action came hours after Tambaram revenue divisional officer M Indrajith faulted the inspector for handling his service revolver carelessly while dealing with the boy, Thammem Ansari, who was picked up on suspicion of stealing from a temple on Tuesday.
The RDO said his preliminary investigation indicated the inspector was in the wrong and suggested a detailed inquiry into the incident.
Acting on the commissionerâs orders, the law and order inspector of Neelankarai police station registered a case against Mr Pushparaj under section 338 of IPC which deals with causing grievous hurt by an act endangering the life or personal safety of others.
The accused can be sentenced forÂ up to two years if proved guilty.
Human rights activists however feelÂ the police has deliberately avoided registering the case under more stringent sections like IPC 308 (attempt to culpable homicide not amounting to murder) against the inspector.
The DRO had during his inquiry spoken to Thammem, a 16-year-old school dropout from Vettuvakani, at the hospital where he is being treated, and his mother and uncle. He also met Mr Pushapraj and other policemen who were present at the station when the boy was shot.
Thameem stable after 4-hour surgery at hospital
Doctors at Global Hospital performed a four-hour surgery on Thameem Ansari on Tuesday from 10 pm onwards.
According to hospital sources, the bullet, fired from the service revolver of inspector Pushparaj, had entered from the front of the neck and exited at the back of the neck. There was no bullet in his body as it had come out through the back.
âIt was a major surgery. The boy was extremely lucky and had a miraculous escape as the bullet went without tearing any major nasal blood vessels, despite being shot from a very close range.
It went in-between the carotid artery, which supplies the head and neck with oxygenated blood, and the jugular vein, which brings deoxygenated blood from the head back to the heart,â said the sources.
The whole area was explored and they could see the hole in one of the veins, which was sutured. The hole through which the bullet came out is being taken care of by a plastic surgeon.
After the surgery, the boy is said to be stable now. He is off the ventilator and will be able to speak in a couple of days. âRight now, he is in ICU,â the sources added.
Next: Muslim outfits seek action
Muslim outfits seek action
Leaders of the Tamil Nadu federation of Muslim bodies and political parties on Wednesday met city police commissioner S. George and demanded the arrest of suspended Neelankarai station crime inspector R. Pushparaj besides booking him under IPC section 308 (attempt to murder) than just section 338 (causing injuries).
The Muslim outfit leaders compared the incident to that of infamous Dilshan case, in which a retired Army official shot a teenager to death in the Army residential complex in the city in July 2011, and asked the city police chief to book the inspector so that he would get maximum punishment.
Tamil Nadu federation of Muslim bodies and political parties stage a protest demanding action.
Earlier, around 100 members of the Tamil Nadu Muslim Munnetra Kazhagam (TMMK) and Socialist Democratic Party of India (SDPI) staged a protest at the Sholinganallur traffic junction and raised slogans against the police. The protestors were later removed and traffic cleared in less than an hour.
Child rights activists and members of the Prisoner Rights Forum pointed out that the police had grossly violated the norms of interrogating juveniles in conflict with law in the case of the 16-year-old boy.
âThe police do not have the right to interrogate juvenile or female suspects inside police stations. Hence, the number of violations in this particular case is countless and the officer has to account for it,â said advocate Pughazendi of the forum. He also pointed out that the Neelankarai police station has been repeatedly in the news for gross human rights violations.