TODAY -

HC orders Rs 5 lakh compensation
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, October 15 2016: A division bench of the High Court of Manipur comprising of Chief Justice RR Prasad and Justice S Serto passed an order on September 27 directing the State Home Department to pay Rs 5 lakh as compensation within 2 months to the family members of a man who had died in the custody of Wangoi police station.

The Court also directed the State DGP to examine the record of UD case dated 26 February 2014 registered in connection with the death of a man accused by Wangoi police station of committing unlawful activities and also to take further action The judgement order was passed by the division bench on September 27 after the final hearing of the case was heard the previous day.

A writ petition was filed by Thoudam ongbi Akashini Devi w/o Th Nabakumar of Wangoi Makha Leikai,  mother of the deceased accused person identified as Th Digbijoy before the division bench against five State respondents which included the State of Manipur through the Principal Secretary (Home), DGP Manipur Police, Imphal West SP, Inspector Yumnam Munal, then  OC of Wangoi Police Station and Sub Inspector Thokchom Ibochouba Singh of Wangoi Police Station The petitioner sought issuance of a writ in the nature of mandamus or order or direction directing the respondents to register a criminal case against the Y Munal, the then OC of Wangoi Police Station and Th Ibochouba, Sub Inspector Wangoi Police Station (respondents number 4 and 5).The petition was also praying for issuance of another writ of the same nature or order or direction directing the  Principal Secretary Home and DGP Manipur Police (respondents number 1 and 2) to set up a special investigation team comprising of honest and competent police officers, and headed by an officer not below the rank of Senior SP to investigate the case and also to issue a direction to let the special investigation team submit report periodically to the High Court for making sure that the investigation is carried out properly and effectively.

The petitioner further prayed for issuance of a writ of the same nature or order directing the respondents to pay compensation to her to the tune of Rs 15 lakh or at such rate the High Court deemed justified as per the law for allegedly causing the death of her son.

The petitioner (mother of the deceased) through her counsel submitted that his son was married and had two children.

He was self employed managing a poultry farm.

He was also working as a head mason and he was also the only bread winner of the family.

The petitioner’s counsel also submitted that on February 23, 2014 at around 2.30 pm, Th Digbijoy was picked up by a team of Wangoi Police Station led by SI Th Ibochouba from her house without giving arrest memo stating that he was needed to be interrogated in connection with eloping with a 31 year old girl from Hiyangthang.

The mother alleged that her son was beaten and tortured under the command of Y Munal, the then OC of Wangoi Police Station and Th Ibochouba, Sub Inspector of Wangoi Police Station.

On account of the torture, Digbijoy’s health deteriorated and he was taken to Wangoi Community Health Centre for necessary medical treatment.

After detaining her son for more than two days in police custody, Digbijoy was produced before the Court of JMIC, Imphal West  in connection with FIR case number 18 (2) 2014 of Wangoi Police Station under section 366/368 IPC and he was remanded to police custody till March 1, 2014.It was also submitted that at around 8  am of February 26, 2014, two police Constables in civil dress came to her residence and informed her and her husband that their son had committed suicide by hanging inside the police lock up.

When they went to Wangoi police station, they found the lifeless body of their son hanging on the door of the toilet attached to the lock up.

The petitioner also alleged that the shirt which was found worn by Digbijoy at the time of his death was not what he had worn at the time of arrest.

The shirt which was used for making the noose around Digbijoy’s neck was the one he wore at the time of his arrest.

After hearing the submissions of the petitioner and the respondents through their counsels and other documents related to the case and considering the facts and circumstances of the case, the Court directed the State Government to pay compensation of Rs five lakh to the family members of the deceased within a period of two months.

Notably, local people of Wangoi Makha Leikai stormed Wangoi police station on February 26 soon after learning about the death of Digbijoy inside police custody.


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