Custodial death sparks off protest in Amritsar | punjab$amritsar | Hindustan Times
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Custodial death sparks off protest in Amritsar

punjab Updated: Sep 17, 2016 16:51 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Family members and well-wishers of Balwant Singh, who died in police custody, laying siege to a road outside Hakima Gate police station in Amritsar on Friday. (Sameer Sehgal/HT)

A protest was staged outside the Gate Hakima police station and blocked the main road here on Friday after a 40-year-old man, Balwant Singh, died in the police custody.

The protesters, comprising victim’s family members, relatives and acquaintances, alleged Balwant died due to physical torture, but the cops claimed he died in the hospital of natural causes.

After being booked for bootlegging, Balwant was picked by the police on Wednesday and on Friday morning, his family was informed that he had died.

Family members alleged Balwant was picked when he was working in the fields and he had been wrongly booked on the charge of bootlegging.

The protesters raised slogans against the police and demanded action against the cops posted at the said police station.

Amritsar police commissioner Amar Singh Chahal said, “Definitely the person was in police custody, but he died in a hospital. We sympathise with the family. We will seek a judicial probe to find out the reasons behind the death.”

Chahal said Balwant had some health issues and he was taken to a government hospital by the cops, where he died.

On action against the cops, Chahal said it was a matter of investigation whether or not they were at fault. He denied that Balwant was tortured in custody.