Kolar Road in Bhopal simmered with anger on Friday after a 22-year-old student allegedly committed suicide by jumping before a speeding train.
Locals alleged that the deceased was being harassed by the police and was being pressured to pay Rs 1 lakh as bribe for going soft on him in a criminal case.
Ajay Khatarkar, a first year engineering student in a private college, was facing charges under Indian Penal Code section 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means).
Khatarkar’s family members alleged that the policemen at the Kolar police station were seeking a hefty bribe and had also threatened to convert the charge into attempt to murder case under IPC section 307.
Khatarkar, who had left home on Thursday afternoon saying he was going to meet a friend in Misrod, was found dead on Friday morning. His body was recovered on the railway tracks near Gautam Nagar under Govindpura police station.
According to police, a case was registered against Khatarkar and his ‘accomplice’ Shani Thakur, a notorious criminal, at Kolar police station under IPC section 326 after the duo allegedly attacked Gaurav Srivas with a sharp-edged weapon during a Ganesh Utsav programme on September 17. Both had evaded arrest in the case so far.
However, the family members of Khatarkar maintained that he had nothing to do with the crime and police had falsely implicated him.
“He was not involved in the crime and was unnecessarily dragged into the case,” said Ajay’s father, Umashankar Khatarkar, a retired police head constable.
He alleged four policemen, including sub-inspector RK Mahoria, head constable Chaitany Gupta and constables Ramesh Khatri and Sanjay Tiwari had been calling Khatarkar constantly on his mobile phone and demanding money to drop his name from the FIR.
“Yesterday Mahoria had come home. He gave me a mobile number and asked me to give `1 lakh to the person who picks up the phone if I wanted to save my son in the case,” he said. The mobile number provided by the family belongs to SI Mahoria.
In a suicide note, recovered from Khatarkar’s bag found hanging on his bike parked near rail tracks, the deceased claimed that he was innocent and was being implicated by Gaurav Srivas. He also wrote that the case had ruined his life.
Sub-inspector Mahoria, however, refuted the charges levelled by the family members of the deceased. “I was investigating the case and Ajay needed to be arrested as he was an accused in the case…I didn’t demand money.”
Additional superintendent of police zone-2, Rajesh Singh Bhadauria, said a probe had been ordered into the matters.