In a suspected case of mistaken identity, a 22-year-old youth in Neyyattinkara has accused the police of having falsely implicated him in two theft cases and subjecting him to third-degree torture. The issue has acquired a new dimension with the District Police Chief (Thiruvananthapuram rural) P. Asok Kumar recommending a Crime Branch probe into the allegations.

The case bore certain resemblance with the mistaken arrest of a Varapuzha youth and his subsequent death allegedly due to custodial torture.

The issue pertained to the arrest of Rejin, a native of Kunnathukal in Neyyattinkara, in connection with thefts cases that had been reported from two shops at the Kunnathukal and Tholady junctions on August 27 and October 1, 2017. Rejin, who was accused of having stolen around Rs. 1.80 lakh in both cases combined, was taken into custody on October 7 on the basis of an unclear CCTV footage recovered from a house located near the shop at Kunnathukal.

“I had been brutally tortured by the Vellarada Circle Inspector G. Ajith Kumar and Sub Inspector T. Vijayakumar at the former’s office. I was also taken to the office of the Neyyattinkara Deputy Superintendent of Police and manhandled. During the course of five days when I had been illegally detained, I was taken to various places including a godown in Kanjiramkulam and tortured to make me own up a crime I had not committed,” Rejin said. Rejin, who used to work as an air-conditioner mechanic, had been produced at the Neyyattinkara Judicial First Class Magistrate court on October 12 and remanded to judicial custody for 21 days. During the remand period, Rejin, who suffered from a heart ailment, had to be hospitalised thrice after complaining of uneasiness. He had also purportedly sustained spinal and leg injuries in the torture.

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