Police Abused Power Wrongly Extended Remand Ganapathy Inquest Lawyer Claims
A Ganapathy, a diabetic, died in hospital on April 18, 2021, a month after he was warded.SHAH ALAM: Allegations of abuse of power and a wrongful extension of the deceased’s remand were raised during an inquest by the coroner’s court here into the death in custody of A Ganapathy almost two years ago.
Lawyer M Visvanathan argued that police ought not to have extended Ganapathy’s remand in March 2021 after they decided to turn him into a prosecution witness for a robbery case.
Ganapathy and one Sritharan Kukaneson were initially arrested on Feb 24, 2021.
“Please tell me which section of the law allowed you to apply for an extension of the remand after it had been decided that he (Ganapathy) would be turned into a prosecution witness?” Visvanathan asked investigating officer Fildza Ibrahim.
Fildza, who is based at the criminal investigation department of the Gombak district police headquarters, maintained that police still needed the cow’s milk seller to track down his brother, Surian, to facilitate its probe into the robbery case.
When told by Visvanathan that police records show Surian had been arrested on March 2, 2021, rendering Ganapathy’s further remand unnecessary, Fildza responded that he had no information of the arrest at the time.
The coroner also heard that at that remand hearing, Ganapathy had informed the magistrate that he needed to have a wound near his right ankle treated due to his diabetic condition.
Fildza went on to testify that Ganapathy was brought to Selayang Hospital the following day.
“Do you mean that if the court orders an individual to be sent to hospital for a medical check-up, you can do so anytime at your own convenience?” Visvanathan asked, questioning the delay.
“(We would need to send him) as soon as possible,” replied Fildza.
Visvanathan also questioned police officer Mazlan Ali’s re-arrest of Ganapathy on March 5, 2021 in connection with a kidnapping case although the complainant had retracted his report some two years earlier.
“The police report was retracted three days after the complainant lodged it. I put it to you that police knew the complainant was not interested in the case. The investigation paper should have been referred to the deputy public prosecutor in 2019,” he said.
In reply, the senior investigating officer said despite the retraction of the report, police still needed Ganapathy to complete its probe in 2021.
Mazlan testified that the probe was necessary to obtain further instructions from the deputy public prosecutor as to whether Ganapathy should be charged in that case.
The inquest before coroner Rasyihah Ghazali continues tomorrow.
Ganapathy died at the hospital on April 18, 2021, just over a month after he was warded.
His family’s lawyer, M Kula Segaran, claimed that the attending pathologist confirmed that Ganapathy died as a result of injuries to his legs and shoulders while in police custody. - FMT
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