Death due to ‘wilful negligence’ of Corpn. officials, says MP

Member of Parliament, Coimbatore, P.R. Natarajan has urged the Coimbatore City Police Commissioner A.K. Viswanathan to alter the section in the case that was filed after a woman was washed away in flash floods on Sunday last.

In a letter to Mr. Viswanathan, he has said that Parvathy was killed when she fell into a drain, a lid of which was open, in Karunanidhi Nagar, Sivananda Colony, on Sunday evening. She was subsequently washed away in the floods and her body was found in Sanganur Canal near Sathyamangalam Road only a day later.

This was not the first such incident in the city. The Corporation officials’ negligence had resulted in the death of a child near Ellen Hospital, a couple of years ago, due to an open drain. Then too the city police registered a case of death under suspicious circumstances, just as they have done so in Parvathy’s case, under Section 174 of the Indian Penal Code.

Mr. Natarajan said that he was of the opinion that the death of such poor, downtrodden people should not be treated as death under suspicious circumstances. Parvathy was killed because of the “wilful negligence” of Corporation officials, who had not ensured the closure of the drain. It was time that the issue was not brushed aside but taken up seriously as in the instant case, the principles of natural justice mandate that responsibility be fixed with all the required seriousness. And this required altering the section from 174 to 304A of the IPC (negligence causing death).

The MP marked a copy of the letter to the Collector M. Karunagaran, who, in the presence of Mayor S.M. Velusamy gave away a cheque for Rs. 1 lakh as solatium to Parvathy’s daughters.

A release from the district administration said that the Collector gave away the solatium to the two daughters of Parvathy, wife of Purushothaman, of Ho Chi Minh Nagar. The release said that she “accidentally” fell into a drain during rains on Sunday.

Members of Legislative Assembly T. Malaravan and R. Doraisamy, Revenue Divisional Officer, Coimbatore, S. Santhakumar and councillors were present on the occasion.

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