New Delhi: Among the barrage of violent videos shot in riot-affected areas of Northeast Delhi, one of the most disturbing featured 23-year-old Faizan and four other young boys.
The now-viral video shows four to five men dressed in police uniform raining lathi blows on the bleeding young men who are writhing on the floor, while taunting them, saying: "You want azadi (freedom)? Take azadi."
One of the brutalised men is seen chanting the national anthem, while others plead for mercy.
The person lying lifeless and in the video was Faizan — he died two days after the video was shot.
News18 went to meet Faizan's family on Friday and found kin who were was finding it hard to express their anger or to come to terms with the alleged murder of their son.
Nayeem, Faizan's older brother, works in a meat shop. After returning home from work on the noon of February 23, Faizan went to a place where non-violent anti-CAA protests were going on, said his brother.
"Suddenly tear-gas shells were lobbed all around. The boys who couldn't bear to stand around walked slightly ahead where they were accosted by the police," said Nayeem. "The police beat them mercilessly, which they shot on video, and left them for dead."
Nayeem said the assaulted boys were then taken to GTB Hospital for treatment.
"They were treated only for name's sake. Soon they were taken to Jyoti Nagar police station where they were kept for two days," he said. "My brother was dying in a lock-up, but the policemen wouldn't let us see him. They abused us and threw us out of the police station."
Nayeem claimed that it was only on the evening of February 25 when they received a call from the police, asking the family to come and take him. He alleged the police knew Faizan was going to die but that they did not want him to pass away inside the lock-up.
"What we got from them was a battered body, bleeding through its skull, with the jaw broken. This was not Faizan," said Bablu, Faizan's brother-in-law. "I saw my brother murmur in pain the whole night. He kept repeating "Police beat me up. They beat me up"."
Bablu added that the family took Faizan to a doctor the next morning, who referred him to GTB Hospital. There, he was declared dead.
"Humare saath bahut nainsaafi hui hai, har jagah laaparwahi hui thi (a lot of injustice has been done with is, there was a lot of carelessness everywhere)," said Nayeem. "Police waalon ko maarne ka adhikaar kahan hai? Kya yeh humari safety ke liye nahi hain? (Who gives the police the right to beat us up? Aren't they here for our safety?)."
Nayeem claimed the police continued to beat the boys and taunt them about 'azadi'.
"Kis cheez se azadi, kabhi unse pucha gaya? Bas jaan le li ek lakde ki yun hi? Peet peet ke (Freedom from what, did they ask the boys? They simply killed them. Blow by blow)," said Nayeem.
No one has answers to his questions for now. Not even the mortuary at GTB Hospital where Faizan's body has been lying for the past two days since hospital authorities have not been releasing bodies since postmortems are taking painfully long.
Even as News18 was talking to Nayeem, a team of policemen came, asked the family members a few questions, took some photographs of their house, and left. Faizan's family may have to wait for a long time before they find any answers to their questions.