I am deeply shocked to learn about the death of a young Malaysian, Kuhan s/o Ananthan , aged 22 years, in police custody recently. I am also equally shocked and alarmed by the media reports that A.Kuhan marks the 126th lock-up death in this country over the past 10 years . A.Kuhan’s death has caused furore among many Indians to ponder about the procedures observed in interrogating a suspect in police custody.
A.Kuhan was arrested by police and detained at Taipan Police station, Subang Jaya,Selangor for interogation on 15 Jan 09. He was alleged to be involved in car theft. It was reported that A.Kuhan collapsed and died while in police custody on 21 Jan 09.A.Kuhan body was taken to
A.Kuhan’s parents were not convinced with the
There was some controversy over how A.Kuhan’s parents had access to the deceased in THE
Based on the extent of the injuries on the body of the late A.Kuhan, public at large presumed that A.Kuhan could have died due to police brutality. Even, the Attorney General Tan Sri Abdul Ghani Patail classified the death of A.Kuhan as murder under Section 302 of the Penal Code.
A.Kuhan body was taken for burial at Puchong Hindu cemetery on 22.1.09. But being dissatisfied with the post-mortem report prepared by the
There was a large gathering at the
Pakatan Rakyat parlimen members, Prof.P.Ramasamy, Gobind Singh Deo and Manickavasagam were present at the UH mortuary hailing for a public inquiry over A.Kuhan’s death and also demanding Selangor Police chief to resign for misleading the public on the cause of A.Kuhan’s death. No BN leaders were visible at the scene.
A.Kuhan is dead and buried and his death is still a misery.The cause of A.Kuhan’s death is for the court to decide. A.Kuhan was a car theft suspect and yet to be charged in court.Hence, no one has the right to proclaim that A.Kuhan is a criminal.
The public feel that the police have failed miserably in protecting A.Kuhan while the deceased was in their custody. Isn’t it the duty of the government (police) to take care of a detainee?
Nevertheless, the Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar’s advice to the public not to make heroes out of criminals, nor demons out of the police. Even though the minister meant in general, it was not well received by the public because the parents ,family members and friends are grieving having lost a loved one. The public emotions are also high against the misfortune.
A.Kuhan death is only the tip of an iceberg. There have been many casualties in detention but not brought to public’s attention. There is a report elsewhere that about 1,300 immigirants died while in detention.
Eventhough it was reported that a large number of detention death involve Indians, let us leave race out of it. As Datuk Nik Aziz, MB Kelantan has pointed out, Malaysian should feel that they have lost a life, the colour of skin is immaterial . The time has come for fellow Malaysians and government not only to address the issue of detainees subject to violent brutality in detention but also revisit the shelved Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Comission (IPCMC) .
Let us put an end to lock-up abuses and deaths. While we are talking aloud about the injury and sorrow alleged to be inflicted on the Palestinians by Israelis in
Lastly, my family and me wish to extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the late A.Kuhan .