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Custody death: Cops, jail staff in a fix

THE CUSTODIAL death of an undertrial during treatment at the district hospital has put the district police and the jail authorities in a tight spot.
None | By HT Correspondent, Gorakhpur
PUBLISHED ON JUL 29, 2006 12:07 AM IST

THE CUSTODIAL death of an undertrial during treatment at the district hospital has put the district police and the jail authorities in a tight spot.

The relatives of the deceased have blamed the jail authorities for the undue delay in carrying out the post-mortem besides levelling charges that they tried to destroy the evidence and hush up the matter.

The post-mortem of the deceased, Prithvipati (38) who died under mysterious circumstances, was conducted on Thursday only after the relatives mounted pressure on the jail authorities.

According to sources, the post-mortem report attributed the cause of death to serious chest and forehead injuries. On the other hand, the district administration had said that Prithvipati had died of sickness.

Notably, the Maharajganj police had arrested Prithvipati along with his brother Ram Narain, Deepak, Laxmi and Jugati on July 24 when they were going to appear before the court for bail.

The police sent them to the Gorakhpur district jail.

Sources said when Prithvipati reached the jail, he complained of serious chest pain.

On July 25, he was sent to the district hospital and his relatives were informed about his critical condition on July 26.

The same day, Prabhunath, Suresh, Shyam Bihari, Shyam Sunder and others reached the jail only to learn of his death.

When the jail authorities handed over the body to the relatives for performing the last rites, they demanded for a post-mortem. After learning about the report, the villagers blamed the police and the jail authorities for using third degree against Prithvipati that resulted in his death. However, efforts to contact jail superintendent Shashi Srivastav failed to solicit any response.

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