The post-mortem examination reports indicate that the death of Reghu, a victim of mob violence at the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation bus terminal at Perumbavoor on Monday night, can be due to injuries inflicted by assaults.

Unconfirmed reports said that the post-mortem examination done at Medical College, Alappuzha, showed Reghu died of cerebral haemorrhage, possibly due to blows received on head.

Two persons had already been taken into custody, including the gunman of K. Sudhakaran, MP, and the police were on the lookout for another. These three had been booked for murder under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code.

The case was that Satheesh, gunman of Mr. Sudhakaran, and his friend Santhosh, both belonging to Thiruvananthapuram, and another person thrashed up Reghu after alleging that he pick-pocketed Santhosh. They were travelling in a KSRTC bus from Thrissur to Kottayam.

“A lot of allegations have been going the rounds, including the one that the money which was recovered from the deceased belonged to him and not stolen, as rumoured. We are looking into all these aspects of the case. The driver and conductor of the bus have also been summoned to appear before the investigating officer, as the bus had left the stand when the incident occurred,” Harshita Attaluri, Superintendent of Police, Ernakulam Rural, told The Hindu.

Initial reports also indicated that there were no cases of theft or any other charges filed against Reghu under the Perumbavoor police station limit, where he was employed in a private firm. He belonged to Palakkad.

“Increase in incidents of mass violence suggests that we coin a new usage ‘anger disorder' and study it properly. More and more people are tending to let out their pent up frustrations through expressions of anger and this become uncontrollable when translated into mob psychology,” said C.J. John, psychiatrist.

The shift in social trends could be the result of multiple factors, such as the failure of cultural check-points, it is pointed out. “A general disillusionment among the public about justice being delivered and also the tendency to become superheroes as depicted in mainstream films give a cultural sanctity to violence and aggression,” said Dr. John.

On the other side, those such as Chitra Venkateswaran, clinical director of the Mental Health Care and Research Foundation (Mehac), differ from the theory that there was a dramatic shift in social psyche.

“Pockets of violence were always there. For example, women in our society were also subjected to aggression. The recent incidents only point towards the failure of a stable social and political system and the absence of role models,” Dr. Venkateswaran said.

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