HC issues notice to Orissa govt on custodial death

Cuttack: Taking note of a writ petition filed by a 70-year-old mother, Orissa High Court issued a notice to the state government directing the home secretary to file a detailed report within two weeks on her petition about the death of her son in police custody.

The Division Bench of Chief Justice V Gopala Gowda and Justice B N Mohapatra yesterday took cognisance of the writ petition filed by Ritima Dehury of Nayagarh district who had sought CBI enquiry into the death of her son Lalit Dehury who was brought dead to MKCG medical college in Berhampur on March 1.

Lalit was allegedly picked up Chamakhandi police of Ganjam district on February 9 along with two other women suspecting them to be Maoists, the petition said.

The police claimed that the victim was not Lalit but one Raju Naik, an anti-social of Chamakhandi who committed suicide inside the police station.

Differing with the claim, Ritima said that the body that was identified in the Berhampur hospital was that of her son.

Alleging foul play in the death of her son, she maintained that her son was killed as a result of "police excess" and demanded action against the erring police officials claiming a compensation of Rs 10 lakh.

Rithima maintained that her son had gone to Ganjam district in search of livelihood where he was arrested by the police suspecting him to be a Maoist. He was not produced in any court until his body was identified in the hospital on March 3.