Kottayam: The Crime Branch team probing the custodial torture of Rajkumar at Nedumkandom police station and his subsequent death in hospital arrested sub-inspector K.A. Sabu and civil police officer Sajimon Antony on Wednesday.
The SI fainted and was taken to the Peerumade taluk hospital and later to the Kottayam MCH. Crime Branch sources said the accused police officers confessed to the charge that they had beaten up Rajkumar while in custody. The two officials were suspended on June 26 by Kochi range DIG Kaliraj Mahesh Kumar.
The two were taken into custody on Tuesday evening and the arrest was recorded on Wednesday morning. The Crime Branch arrested them after eight police officers, who were suspended earlier, were questioned by various teams.
Rajkumar, 49, a native of Kolahalamedu near Vagamon was arrested by the Nedumkandam police on June 15 in a loan fraud case. According to the police, he had cheated 34 self-help groups after taking money from them.
However, Rajkumar’s relatives said he was taken for questioning on June 12. He was in police custody for four days and was allegedly beaten up there. His arrest was recorded on June 15 and he was produced before the court and remanded in judicial custody on June 16.
He was admitted to the Peerumedu taluk hospital on June 21 and was declared dead by the doctor who attended on him after 20 minutes of trying to save him went in vain.
The post-mortem report showed injuries on the deceased, particularly on his thigh and leg.
Kottayam Crime Branch SP Sabu Mathew, who is investigating the case, told DC that the two officers had been charged with murder, destruction of evidence, illegal custody and concealing the crime. More arrests would follow, he said.
SI Sabu’s ECG showed variations and he will be presented in court only after receiving the doctors’ report, he said.
Rajkumar launched Haritha Finance at Thookupalam near Nedumkandom around April by promising women of Nedumkandom and Karunapuram panchayaths that if they deposit Rs 1,000 they will be provided loan of Rs 1 lakh in the course of two months. The women could register at the Haritha Finance either individually or by forming self help groups. Following this more than 3,500 women of the two panchayaths registered and deposited their money in Haritha Finance. When the loan amount was not provided within the said period the depositors caught hold of him and handed him over to the Nedumkandom police on June 12....