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Rights

Lockdown: Kerala Human Rights Panel Seeks Report on Man Forced to Carry Ailing Father

Citing the lockdown, police had stopped the man from taking an autorickshaw to the hospital from which his father was to be discharged.

New Delhi: The Kerala state human rights commission has taken suo motu note of a man forced to physically carry his ailing father through traffic and sought an explanation from the local police.

Times of India reported that Punalur police had stopped a 30-year-old man, Roymon, from ferrying his 89-year-old father back home in an autorickshaw after the latter was discharged from hospital. Roymon is originally from Kulathupuzha.

He was stopped when he tried to reach the hospital in an autorickshaw.

“When he reached the hanging bridge, police stopped him citing that he didn’t possess the relevant documents of the vehicle. Though he said that he wanted to bring his aged father back home from the hospital, the police officers were unrelenting,” said the report.

With no other option, he walked to the hospital, hauled his father on his shoulder and then started to make the return journey. A video has gone viral on social media showing the man carrying his father through the blazing sun.

“Though the policemen on the road saw the youth carrying his father on his shoulders, they did not show any leniency to them. According to the youth, the Punalur circle inspector asked for the vehicle’s documents and though he showed the documents they did not allow him to take the autorickshaw to the hospital,” it said.

The Kerala State Human Rights Commission have sough a report from the district police chief, reported TOI, and will consider the case at the next sitting in Kollam.

Also read: Amidst a Lockdown, Why Must Cops Wield the Lathi With Such Impunity and Callousness?

The newspaper said that the police claimed that their hands were tied as the man did not have any hospital documents or any affidavit to show that he was going to the hospital.

After facing criticism from the media, the police also claimed that they had to be strict, as the town had witnessed frequent breaching of lockdown restrictions.

Police excess during the enforcement of the lockdown had made news from the first day, March 24, itself. Videos surfaced in which police were seen forcing people to do squats, scramble on their hands and knees, lie down on the ground and roll over several times in opposite directions. In places, police also beat people who flouted norms.

(With PTI inputs)