The entire staff of a police station here was sent to police lines on Thursday after a 32-year-old man died under custody. According to police, Kamal Lodha (32) was brought to Nayapura police station at around 5 pm on Wednesday for allegedly disrupting public order. He was found hanging in a toilet within the barrack of the police station, they claimed.
However, family members of Lodha alleged that he was killed in custody by police. Rajasthan State Human Right Commission also took cognizance of the media reports on the death inside the police station. A single-bench of the commission, headed by Justice Gopal Krishan Vyas, issued order to the IG, Kota range and Kota (City) SP to submit afactual report in the matter within a week.
A judicial probe under section 176 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) is underway and the entire staff of the police station have been sent to police lines, ASP (City) Praveen Jain told the media. The Station House Officer (SHO) of the Nayapura police station, Mukesh Meena, has been suspended, another police official said. Lodha was brought to the police station on the complaint of his aunt and cousin named Ravi, who said he was creating nuisance in an inebriated state in the family and the neighbourhood, Deputy Superintendent of Police Bhagwat Singh Hingad said.
A resident of the Masjid Nayapura area, Lodha was accompanied to the police station by his mother, who later went home to collect his ID and photos for legal formalities, he said. While formalities for his arrest were underway, Lodha asked if he could use the toilet. He was taken to a toilet within the barrack of the police station where he allegedly hanged himself using his shirt and tying it to an iron grill at around 7.15 pm, Hingad said.
The family members of Lodha, accompanied by former BJP MLA Prahlad Gunjal, staged a dharna outside the police station demanding that staff there be suspended and a murder case be registered against them. They also demanded a government job for a family member and Rs 10 lakh in compensation. Gunjal claimed that it was not possible for 5 feet 9 inches tall Lodha to commit suicide by tying his shirt to 4 feet 3 inches high gate of the barrack. How can this be possible? the former MLA told PTI. He alleged that Lodha was killed by the police and questioned their suicide theory.
Later, the family members agreed to take away the body from there after assurance from the administration of Rs 2 lakh compensation from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund and special proposal of another Rs 6 lakh aid and contractual job to the wife of Lodha in the UIT (Urban Infrastructure Trust). Lodha had four cases of theft and five of possessing illegal arms against him. A case was registered against him on August 26 at the same police station for creating a ruckus in an inebriated state, Hingad said.