The Tamil Nadu government has appointed senior IAS officer P. Amudha as a high-level inquiry officer to undertake a detailed investigation into the complaints against suspended IPS officer Balveer Singh and other police personnel that they subjected detenus to cruelty in the Ambasamudram sub-division of Tirunelveli district.
Ms. Amudha will submit a report within a month, said an official release on Friday.
The decision followed the Tirunelveli Collector’s recommendation, which was based on a preliminary report from the Cheranmahadevi Sub-Collector, who held an inquiry into the allegations of similar incidents at police stations in the sub-division.
However, human rights activist and executive director of People’s Watch Henri Tiphagne was disappointed with the decision. He said the government was taking a “circuitous” route “only to avoid registration of an FIR” against the IPS officer and others even after a prima facie case was made out in the first report.
Contending that the process amounted to disrespecting the victims, he wanted the government to drop its decision to get them to depose before different authorities. He underlined the need to register an FIR against Mr. Singh and others and to constitute a special investigation team.
The State government last month revised the quantum of compensation from ₹5 lakh to ₹7.5 lakh for victims of custodial death/torture/rape by police personnel or prison officials and for victims of police firing. For permanent incapacitation caused by police personnel/prison officials, the compensation was revised from ₹5 lakh to ₹7.5 lakh, and for torture and partial incapacitation, the amount was revised from ₹1 lakh to ₹3 lakh.