Sathankulam cop arrested for custodial deaths dies of Covid-19

Special sub-inspector Paldurai — who was arrested in connection with the deaths of P Jeyaraj and his son J Beniks after being tortured by the Sathankulam police — died of Covid-19 in the early hours of today.

Pauldurai (56) breathed his last at the Government Rajaji Hospital (GRH) in Madurai early today. He was one of the 10 policemen arrested in connection with the alleged custodial torture of P Jeyaraj and his son Bennicks at the Sathankulam police station in Tuticorin district in June, prior to their death in a government hospital, an incident that caused a national outrage.

Pauldurai was arrested along with four other policemen — Chelladurai, Saamadurai, Veyilamuthu and Thomas — in connection with the case. These officers were allegedly holding Jayaraj and Bennix while the other policemen attacked them.

They were booked under Section 302 (Punishment for murder), Section 201 (Causing disappearance of evidence of offence), Section 342 r/w 107 (Punishment for wrongful confinement) of the IPC.

Pauldurai, within days of being taken into custody in the Sathankulam custodial deaths case, had tested positive for coronavirus.

While Pauldurai was undergoing treatment after testing positive for the infection, his family had alleged that he was not being given proper treatment. Later, pictures of Pauldurai getting treatment for Covid-19 were released.

Doctors diagnosed him with uncontrolled diabetes and a heart condition. Recently, he started losing consciousness. Hospital authorities declared that he died around 12.10 am.