From a Correspondent
JORHAT, January 21: Mystery has deepened following the dumping of an unidentified body in the morgue of JMCH (Jorhat Medical College and Hospital) in the wee hours of Thursday morning in Jorhat.
The man, believed to be in his late fifties, with trim grey beard in the chin according to hospital sources was subjected to third degree torture and may have collapsed due to interl injuries. Rumours are already doing rounds that the deceased was a victim of alleged custodial torture after the victim was picked up by police from an undisclosed location on grounds of having nexus with crimils linked to bike and car lifters. Notably, the Jorhat police on Wednesday had picked up one Rambabu Mahato in connection with case of scooter theft.
Sub Inspector Nirmal Handique, while talking to The Sentinel, said, “Based upon an FIR lodged by Baljit Singh of Rajabari informing theft of an LML Vespa AS -03 E 1145 from near the Old Balibaat area of Jorhat on January 12, and accordingly acting upon Jorhat P.S case no 87/16 U/S 379 IPC we maged to b Rambabu Mahato at around 6 pm from near the ASTC stand after we were tipped off about a person loitering near some parked scooters. Once bbed, we interrogated him and found that the miscreant was residing in Jorhat for the last 10 years but was without any permanent and temporary address. We suspect the person to have had a hand in the theft of the LML scooter. We took Rambabu even to Boloma in Teok but could not find the scooter.”
Meanwhile, Rambabu informed, “I am a rickshaw puller by profession and am origilly from Sitamari district of Bihar. I am the son of Prakash Mahato. I run a rickshaw in Jorhat and had been pulling it since the last 10 years picking up late night and early morning passengers who arrive by bus. The owner of the rickshaw is one Borthakur having a grocery shop near Bhuyan Xerox. Yesterday as usual I was waiting for customers and when it grew very cold I went to take shelter in an ATM near the SBI main bank. I was fast asleep when two policemen in a bike came and woke me up. It was 4 am. While one took the rickshaw the other took me to the Jorhat Police station. I don’t know my crime but now I heard that I have been forwarded to jail.”
The revelation has once again revealed the shadowy image of Jorhat police especially when the IO (Investigative Officer) Nirmal Handique claimed of picking Rambabu at 6 pm on Wednesday from near the ASTC stand and Rambabu on the reverse giving confession of being picked up only at 4 am on Thursday morning. The OC Teok, had also informed about a police party from Jorhat police station bringing in a person on Wednesday night but before midnight for tracing out crimils linked to bike and car lifting gang. If Rambabu was not with the police during that time then who was with the police and where has he gone?
Meanwhile, most police officers including TSI (Town Sub Inspector) and other Sub Inspectors kept avoiding question calls and senior police officers expressed total ignorance about the matter but sources at the JMCH have categorically stated about third degree torture committed upon the deceased. Till the filing of the report no postmortem has been performed on the unidentified body and allegations are that a powerful lobby is trying to hush up the matter by giving it the shape of a case of an accidental victim or a victim of an alleged physical abuse by a mob.