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Friday, 13 April 2012

Police torture of a Dalit family at their residence

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information from MASUM, concerning the case of midnight house raid conducted by the police in a Dalit family. The officers forced into the house, tortured and assaulted the family members and took into custody Mr. Dulal Sarkar, and have charged him of false cases. It is reported that the police undertook this heinous act to wreck political vengeance against the victim family at the behest of the ruling political party. It is also reported that the police, in order to cover up their deeds have fabricated records to show that the victim was arrested from a different place than his house. The police have also arrested two more person in similar manner on the same day, Mr. Prafulla Sarkar and Mr. Kalipada Durani.
CASE NARRATIVE:
The fact-finding report by MASUM provides the following facts. On 11 January at about 11 pm about nine police officers including Mr. Bahar Ali, Sub-Inspector of Police Berhampore Police Station and Mr. Shyamaprosad Saha, the Officer-in-Charge and Mr. Kajisaheb, the Second Officer at Jalangi Police Station forcibly entered the house of the victim, Mr. Dulal Sarkar, by breaking open the door of the house. The officers arrested Sarkar and started assaulting him.
The police tied Dulal with a rope and dragged him on the ground with force. Dulal's wife Ms. Parbati Sarkar, tried to intervene to save her husband from the police. But the officers abused her using filthy language and assaulted her with a wooden stick, fisted and kicked her. There were no female police officers in the police team.
The police then destroyed household articles kept inside the house. Then the police moved to the house of Mr. Prafulla Sarkar, son of Bhasaram Sarkar and Mr. Kalipada Durani, son of Late Balaram Durani and assaulted them brutally at their home. There too the police destroyed household articles. Then the police personnel brought Dulal, Prafulla and Kalipada to Berhampore Police Station and later produced them before the local magistrate after implicating them in a criminal case, vide Berhampore Police Station Case no. 1351/2011 dated 23 November 2011, registered under sections 399 and 402 of the Indian Penal Code and also under sections 25 and 28 of the Indian Arms Act.
At the time of arrest, the police did not disclose any reason for the arrest. It is further revealed that the police also manufactured records showing different place and time of the arrest in order to suppress their misdeeds.
Mr. Govinda Sarkar, the elder brother Dulal, lodged a written compliant before the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad regarding the incident of police torture upon the victims. But till date there has been neither any enquiry nor action taken by the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad over the complaint. Parbati Sarkar, Dulal's wife who had suffered injuries as a result of the assault is receiving medical treatment at the moment.
It is also revealed in the fact-finding that the victims are poor and that they are daily wage earners. It is reported that that the victims were falsely implicated in the criminal case out of political vendetta.
SUGGESTED ACTION:
Please write to the authorities mentioned below demanding an investigation into this case. The victim and his family must be provided with immediate protection.
The AHRC is also writing a separate letter to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment calling for further intervention in this case.

SAMPLE LETTER:
Dear __________,
INDIA: Kindly investigate the case of torture of three Dalit persons by the West Bengal state police
 Names of victims:
1. Mr. Dulal Sarkar, son of Mr. Bhaduri Sarkar;
2. Ms. Parbati Sarkar, wife of Dulal Sarkar;
3. Mr. Prafulla Sarkar, son of Bhasaram Sarkar;
4. Mr. Kalipada Durani, son of Late Balaram Durani;
All are from the Scheduled Caste community (Dalits) and from the village Udaynagar Colony, Jalangi Police Station, Murshidabad district, West Bengal state
Names of alleged perpetrators:
1. Mr. Bahar Ali, Sub-Inspector of Police Berhampore Police Station
2. Mr. Shyamaprosad Saha, Officer-in-Charge Jalangi Police Station
3. Mr. Kajisaheb, Second Officer of Jalangi Police Station
4. Six other police officers from Jalangi Police Station
Date of incident: 11 January 2012 at about 11 pm
Place of incident: In the houses of the victims in Udaynagar Colony village
I am writing to express concern regarding yet another case of police torture and fabricated charges registered by the West Bengal state police against three Dalits. The details of the case are as follows:
The fact-finding report by MASUM provides the following facts. On 11 January at about 11 pm about nine police officers including Mr. Bahar Ali, Sub-Inspector of Police Berhampore Police Station and Mr. Shyamaprosad Saha, the Officer-in-Charge and Mr. Kajisaheb, the Second Officer at Jalangi Police Station forcibly entered the house of the victim, Mr. Dulal Sarkar, by breaking open the door of the house. The officers arrested Sarkar and started assaulting him.
The police tied Dulal with a rope and dragged him on the ground with force. Dulal's wife Ms. Parbati Sarkar, tried to intervene to save her husband from the police. But the officers abused her using filthy language and assaulted her with a wooden stick, fisted and kicked her. There were no female police officers in the police team.
The police then destroyed household articles kept inside the house. Then the police moved to the house of Mr. Prafulla Sarkar, son of Bhasaram Sarkar and Mr. Kalipada Durani, son of Late Balaram Durani and assaulted them brutally at their home. There too the police destroyed household articles. Then the police personnel brought Dulal, Prafulla and Kalipada to Berhampore Police Station and later produced them before the local magistrate after implicating them in a criminal case, vide Berhampore Police Station Case no. 1351/2011 dated 23 November 2011, registered under sections 399 and 402 of the Indian Penal Code and also under sections 25 and 28 of the Indian Arms Act.
At the time of arrest, the police did not disclose any reason for the arrest. It is further revealed that the police also manufactured records showing different place and time of the arrest in order to suppress their misdeeds.
Mr. Govinda Sarkar, the elder brother Dulal, lodged a written compliant before the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad regarding the incident of police torture upon the victims. But till date there has been neither any enquiry nor action taken by the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad over the complaint. Parbati Sarkar, Dulal's wife who had suffered injuries as a result of the assault is receiving medical treatment at the moment.
It is also revealed in the fact-finding that the victims are poor and that they are daily wage earners. It is reported that that the victims were falsely implicated in the criminal case out of political vendetta.
I therefore request you:
1. That the statements of the victims are immediately recorded and the case investigated;
2. Immediate criminal actions taken against the officers against torture;
3. The victim who is hurt in the police action be immediately provided medical treatment;
5. All the victims paid interim compensation by the government until permanent arrangements are made to resettle them decently.

Yours sincerely,
----------------
PLEASE SEND YOUR LETTERS TO:
1. Director General & Inspector General of Police
Government of West Bengal
Writers Buildings, Kolkata-1
West Bengal
INDIA
Fax: +91 33 2214 4498 / 2214 5486
Email: dgp_westbengal@gmail.com
2. Chief Secretary
Government of West Bengal
Writers' Building, Kolkata, West Bengal
INDIA
Fax: + 91 33 22144328
Email: chiefsec@wb.gov.in
3. Additional Chief Secretary (Home)
Government of West Bengal
Writers' Building, Kolkata, West Bengal
INDIA
Email: sechome@wb.gov.in
4. Ms. Mamata Banerjee
Chief Minister
Government of West Bengal
Writers' Building, Kolkata, West Bengal
INDIA
Fax: + 91 33 22144328
Email: cm_wb@nic.in
5. Chairperson
National Human Rights Commission
Faridkot House, Copernicus Marg
New Delhi 110001
INDIA
Fax: + 91 11 2338 4863
E-mail: chairnhrc@nic.in

Thank you
Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission (ua@ahrc.asia)