Kerala Police officer involved in murder kills self

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Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 13 (IANS) A senior Kerala Police officer who was eluding arrest after causing a man’s death a week back was on Tuesday found hanging at his home in Kollam district.

Kerala Police chief ALoknath Behra said the investigation in the case in which the deceased B. Harikumar was an accused would, however, continue.

The police and revenue officials have completed the inquest and the autopsy would be conducted on Wednesday at the Medical College Hospital here.

Superintendent of Police B. Asok Kumar told the media at Harikumar’s home that the preliminary finding was that this was a case of suicide but detailed scientific tests would be conducted.

When the news appeared on television that the officer had committed suicide, a large crowd gathered in front of his house at Kalamabalam, about 50 km from here.

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Harikumar, who was the Deputy Superintendent of Police at Neyattinkara, had been on the run since November 5 night when he pushed an electrician, Sanal Kumar, following an altercation.

Kumar fell on the road and was crushed by a speeding car. Harikumar fled from the scene and was eluding arrest for the past eight days.

Kumar’s wife Viji, who was on a day-long protest seeking justice at the same spot where her husband came under the vehicle, reacted to Harikumar’s suicide: “God’s verdict has come.” She then ended her protest.

Harikumar’s bail plea was supposed to come up at a lower court on Wednesday. There were widespread speculation that the police were helping Harikumar to dodge arrest.

The electrician’s wife had earlier demanded a CBI or court-managed probe because she feared that Harikumar’s colleagues in the police would turn a murder case into that of a road accident.

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Kumar’s sister Sajitha said although the prime culprit was dead, all those who tried to help Harikumar must face punishment.

The incident occurred at Neyattinkara when Harikumar was in civilian dress and reportedly visiting a woman friend. Kumar was trying to take out his vehicle when a parking row led to Kumar’s death.

Witnesses and Kumar’s kin alleged that the injured electrician was not immediately rushed to a hospital. He died as the police van carrying him first dropped off officers at a police station. By the time Kumar could get medical attention, he was dead.

–IANS

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