THE CREMATION of Ramesh Chandra Chauhan, who had allegedly died after being beaten by police Friday evening, was held in a tense situation and heavy police presence at his native hometown Hatod on Saturday evening.
The entire town observed a bandh to protest the incident and even political parties of all hues joined protest demonstrations. The people had vowed not to cremate the deceased until action was taken against the guilty policemen.
The body was brought to the town after post mortem at Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Hospital late in the afternoon under heavy police cordon even as a large police force was already deployed in the town to thwart any untoward incident.
The agitators along with family members went directly to the police station after reaching the town and placed the body at the police station gate. It appeared as if the who town had descended at the gate of the police station.
The angry crowd shouted slogans against the police and demanded action against the policemen for the death of the Chouhan.
Senior police and district officials, who had arrived in the town were closeted inside the police station discussing the strategy to handle the situation.
By 7 pm the officials had managed to calm the agitators by agreeing to initiate action against the officials responsible. Tension subsided only after the cremation was over and officials claimed that the situation in the town was under control.
Chauhan (52), who is survived by wife, two daughters and two sons, had no criminal records. Belonging to the Gujarati ‘darji’ community, he was engaged in his hereditary occupation and ran a tailoring shop.
The two policemen - SI Raghuvanshi, head constable Radheshyam Malviya and constable Virendra have been accused by the public of being of indulging in immoral acts and directly responsible for the death.
Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Umashankar Bhargav has been directed to inquire into the incident by the District Magistrate Vivek Aggarwal.
In the meantime, Judicial Magistrate Hatod Ashutosh Mishr taking suo-moto cognizance has admitted the case and asked for photographs and other evidence. Sub-Divisional Officer Police (SDOP) Sanver, Rajesh Pingloiya said that the three policemen accused by the public have been line attached. An immediate exgratia relief of Rs 15,000 has been ordered by the Collector apart from any other compensation as seen fit after the completion of enquiry.
Earlier in the day Bajrang Dal activists created a ruckus at the MY Hospital and the postmortem could be conducted only late in the afternoon on Saturday.
Narendra Parmar and Pushkar Pawar alleged that the police was trying to distort the facts by bringing the body in a private Maruti van and dumping it at the hospital without fulfilling any formality.
They demanded a change in the panel of doctors to perform the postmortem, leading to inordinate delay. Ultimately the police, district administration and MYH authorities allowed District Hospital Assistant Surgeon Dr Bharat Vajpayee to be present as the public nominee and also bring Mahatma Gandhi Medical College (MGM) Forensic Science Head of Department (HoD) Dr Sanjay Dadu to lead team. The other doctors on board included Dr PS Thakur, Dr Noor Mohammed and Dr Unda.
ASP Manoj Shrivastav, CSP’s Dhannajay Shah, BJ Salunke, Tukoganj TI SB Nashine, Palasia TI Deepak Shukla, Chandan nagar TI Daulat Singh, Mahila Thana TI Sarita Java and others camped at the hospital following apprehensions of violence.