Court enhances compensation for custodial death

July 3rd, 2008 - 8:30 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 3 (IANS) The Delhi High Court Thursday enhanced the compensation granted to the widow of a man who died in police custody nine years ago and asked the Delhi government to pay her Rs.500,000 in damages. A division bench headed by Chief Justice Ajit Prakash Shah and Justice S. Muralidhar also asked the government to pay interest at the rate of 7.5 percent on the amount from 2001, when the petitioner had approached the Supreme Court for relief.

The case dates back to Oct 15, 1999, when Mahender Singh was coming to Delhi from Haryana to meet his sister who was suffering from cancer and was carrying Rs.130,000 for her treatment.

Delhi Police constables arrested Mahender from Jindpur area near Alipur here and interrogated him about why he was carrying so much cash with him.

During the interrogation, policemen hit him so hard that he died the next day, and the the post-mortem report confirmed this.

Mahender had withdrawn some money from his provident fund account and borrowed the rest from his brother for the treatment of their sister.

Mahender’s wife Sunita approached the Supreme Court, demanding compensation and it transferred the case to the high court.

A single-judge bench in 2005 asked the government to pay Rs.300,000 in compensation, but Sunita challenged it before the two-judge bench.

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