EVERETTE ASSIS TELLES, MARGAO
The custodial death of a father and son duo in Tuticorin has sent shock waves across the country. In the case of George Floyd, the crime took place in US in broad daylight and a passer-by recorded the video footage of the gruesome incident, which went viral triggering worldwide protests. In the case of Jayaram and his son Bennix, they were allegedly brutally assaulted in a police lock-up sans video cameras. In a shocking development, it has now come to light that some of the police officers in the Tuticorin custodial death case are believed to have also been involved in religious persecution and human rights violations earlier this year. Incidentally, it has come to light that the same cops Ragu Ganesh and Balakrishnan and head constable Murugan, who are believed to be responsible for the death of Jayaram and Bennix were also involved in brutally assaulting a Christian pastor and eight of his members in February, raising suspicion of religious overtones, as both belonged to the same faith. This raises serious questions as to whether religious freedom exists in the state of Tamil Nadu and if the state government is trying to bury the hatchet as a one-off incident. The case of Floyd resulted in Indians demanding action. Floyd’s death shook the conscience of the world, as we all could see the video of that brutal act. If one was shown the video of the alleged assault of the Tuticorin father and son with their knees being smashed with bamboo batons and they beaten black and blue, anyone will agree that Floyd’s murder is no comparison to this barbaric and savage act committed at the Sathankulam police station. When police brutality resulted in the death of Floyd in the United States, the people came onto the streets to protest which resulted in stringent action against the perpetrators of the crime. Do we also need a Floyd kind of demonstration to awaken the conscience of the authorities?