A lower court in Kokrajhar has issued an arrest warrant against IPS Officer Anurag Tangkha and two police constables for their alleged role in the custodial death of a alleged ULFA rebel Ananta Roy alias Dwijen Roy alias Hiranya Deka alias Lambhu way back in 1999.
The Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM), Kokrajhar had ordered Tangkha, who is at present posted as Inspector General of Police (IGP) of the Vigilance and Anti-corruption Cell and his two PSOs—Prabin Borah and Ram Nagina Raut—to be present in the Court on Wednesday (October 3) but neither Tangkha nor his two PSOs turned up at the court. The CJM court now has issued strict order to Tangkha and his two PSOs to appear in the court on October 10 without fail.
Rai had died on October 25, 1999 at the police lock-up of Kokrajhar P.S when he was severely beaten up by IGP Tangkha, who was then serving as Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) in Kokrajhar, and his two PSOs.
The CJM, Kokrajhar in his order said, “…one can easily understand the inhuman circumstances under which the alleged ULFA man late Ananta Rai died due to the inhuman torture and inhuman treatment by policeman during the police custody.
“One of the witness who was allegedly present along with the deceased victim at the place of occurrence being a arrested person stated in his statement u/s 164 CrPC that before the death of the deceased victim he was beaten up in the police lockup/police control room and prior to his death, the deceased victim asked for water and complained of illness, but there was no one to give him water and then he became unconscious and ultimately he died.”
“Thus one can understand the circumstances under which the deceased victim had to die under police custody without his fundamental right to life guaranteed in the Constitution of India under Article 21 and his legal right of not being tortured under police custody even declared by Supreme Court of India in various judgments being protected by the persons who had the duty to protect the same,” the order said.
From the materials in the case record and case-diary, I find enough/sufficient materials against all the three accused–Anurag Tankha, Prabin Borah and Ram Nagina Raut–of the offences under section 448/304/34 of IPC to proceed in this case, the CJM further added.
From the FIR of the case lodged by a police officer himself and the post mortem report of the deceased victim, the custodial torture and custodial death of the victim is established, the order added.
Police officer Binoy Ch Modok then filed a case (255/1999) against Tangkha and his two PSOs with the Kokrajhar station under Sections 302 and 114 of the IPC.
Considering the seriousness of the offence, the case was handed over to CID, Assam.
The CID conducted the investigation into the case and ultimately filed the Final Report in this case by finding the case to be true but failed to obtain Prosecution Sanction against the three accused.
The family members of Roy now see the arrest warrant against the accused police officer and constables as a positive step.
“We were expecting the step earlier. It has taken such a long time. Now we are happy that the court has issued an arrest warrant against the police officials. Our demand is that the accused officers be punished strictly so that such incidents do not recur,” said late Roy’s brother Simanta Roy.