Bengali goldsmith claims brutal torture by Goan cops

Last Updated: Fri, Oct 12, 2012 09:29 hrs

Panaji: A goldsmith from West Bengal claimed that he was stripped naked and beaten by Goa Police Crime Branch officials, who are under pressure to probe the sensational murder of a Goan goldsmith last month.

Jehangir Ali Khan, 47, a West Bengal resident, told reporters at a media briefing here Friday that he was picked up from a railway station, beaten mercilessly and threatened with implication in the murder of Ratnakant Raikar and the subsequent theft of gold ornaments from his shop Sep 16.

Khan has been living in Goa at Parra, 10 km from here, for over a decade.

"I was made to stand naked, stripped to my underwear at the Crime Branch and was thrown to the floor and beaten by policemen there," Khan said.

"One of the officials beat me on my face and now my eardrum is ruptured," he said, adding that the police were resisting to register his complaint.

Khan also cited his injuries from a medical report issued by the state-government run Goa Medical College and Hospital, located on the outskirts of Panaji.

Police here have been under pressure to crack Raikar's murder case, where unidentified culprits slit the goldsmith's throat in his store during lunch hour and decamped with gold worth Rs.1 crore.

Subsequently in media briefings, police said that Raikar was in touch with a Bengali gold artisan some minutes before the murder.

Khan claims that he is not the only ethnic Bengali who was being harassed in Goa since Raikar's murder.

"A lot of Bengalis I know are being threatened. The police are just picking them up and harassing," Khan said.

When contacted, a senior police official said that Khan WAS picked up on the basis of a prima facie doubt as he had left Goa for Bengal by train Sep 18, two days after the murder.

"We are examining every single angle. Khan had left two days after the Raikar murder happened. We wanted to know why," said a top police official on condition of anonymity.

An informal enquiry haS been initiated into the complaints of assault by Crime Branch personnel, the official added.

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