Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Media Statement by M. Kula Segaran MP Ipoh Barat, and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 30th Aug, 2017.

Independent investigation required on the death in custody of Baskar Rao

I just attended the final rights of Baskar Rao, 47 years old who had allegedly set himself on fire while he was detained with handcuffs while he was at the Jelapang police station.

I spoke briefly with the family members. The deceased’s wife, Thanaletchemy 45years and his 2 children were at the crematorium alongside the deceased’s mother who wept uncontrollably not knowing how her loving son was burnt to death whilst under the custody, care and control of the police.

Since he was in the hospital bed for the last 9 days he was literally fighting for his life. He died yesterday at 4.10pm. Now with his departure we need true and honest answers. As the police is the principle party who are supposed to enlighten the family on how this supposed immolation took place. As the police are interested in the outcome of this investigation, we cannot rule out biasness if the investigation is left solely to them. I would suggest the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission and/or SUHAKAM take over the investigations to find out how this incident happened that resulted in the death of Baskar Rao in his prime age.

Who will now provide for the children and the family?. Generally, when there are serious allegations against the police the police would love to and do make it public that the criminal or in the deceased case he was involved in many previous crimes.

For examble SAC Gan while commenting on this matter said “The man had a parang on his motorcycle. He also has a criminal record with 13 cases, including drug related case. Why and for what purpose SAC Gan had to inform the world at large of the previous cases? Are this done to shore up the image of the police or to justify what the police had or had not done?.

I think the action of divulging the previous criminal activates of the deceased makes the police to look good in what they have done. Further, this act is unbecoming of a professional body and stating the facts of any criminal background is clearly to let the case be tried and decided by the media.

How and what opportunity has the deceased to defend the allegation by SAC Gan?. I urge the police to act in a civilized manner and be caring to all including criminals. Nobody is above the law and that includes the police.

Can the police confirm if the CCTV was working at the time of the incident and has any police officers been suspended from work due to this incident? This confirmation would be better than for SAC Gan to speak about the criminal records of the deceased.

As death by fire whilst being handcuffed by the police in a police station, will the Coroner be asked to determine the cause of death? Be rest assured we would make sure justice is served without fear or favour in the case

Our team of lawyers from the DAP, V.Vemal Arasan, N.Selvam and I will provide the necessary legal assistance.

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