Six arrested in connection with veterinary student’s death in Wayanad

Leader of the Opposition alleges in the Assembly that the accused are SFI activists; student union denies the charge

Updated - February 29, 2024 01:23 am IST

Published - February 29, 2024 01:17 am IST - KALPETTA

Youth congress activists taking out a protest march to the Vythiri police station in Wayanad on Wednesday.

Youth congress activists taking out a protest march to the Vythiri police station in Wayanad on Wednesday. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

The Vythiri police on February 28 (Wednesday) arrested six students of the College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences at Pookode in Wayanad in connection with the recent death of a second-year Bachelor of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry student.

J.S. Siddharth, 20, was found hanging in the hostel bathroom on the Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University campus on February 18.

The arrested are Billgate Joshua from Sulthan Bathery, S. Abhishekh from Idukki, Donsdai from Thodupuzha, and Rahna Binoy, S.D. Akash, and R.D. Sreehari from Thiruvananthapuram. All are students of the college and were arrested invoking various Sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Kerala Prohibition of Ragging Act, the police said.

The police, who had initially lodged a case of unnatural death, later registered a case against 12 persons for various offences, including abetment of suicide, wrongful restraint, and voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means, under the IPC and the Kerala Prohibition of Ragging Act.

The Varsity had suspended the accused from the institution and hostel. The police said the accused were absconding after the incident.

Siddharth’s father Jayaprakash told the media that his son was allegedly killed by some local SFI leaders and activists studying in the same college.

According to the post-mortem report, there were several injuries on his son’s body and the stomach was empty which indicated that no food was given to him for 2-3 days, he said.

Mr. Jayaprkash said he came to know that his son was beaten up as part of ragging.

Since SFI activists and local leaders are involved, their party would protect the accused. The police are competent, but it was suspected that they were facing pressure,” he said.

Leader of Opposition V.D. Satheesan also alleged in the Assembly that the accused were SFI activists and they had beaten the student to death. However, the SFI has denied the allegation.

Meanwhile, the Youth Congress took out a protest march to the Vythiri police station demanding the arrest of the accused. The acussed were remanded in judicial custody for 14 days.

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