Palakkad : The Kerala Police on Friday arrested two of the seven suspects in the killing of a “mentally unfit” tribal youth a day ago, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said.
The 27-year-old Adivasi youth, Madhu, who was said to be “not of sound mind”, was beaten to death here by a lynch mob which had accused him of theft. But the bag he was carrying — when people chased him down — contained waste papers, not rice. Without verifying the contents of the bag, they assaulted him, which led to his death, police sources said.
Madhu, a resident of tribal hamlet Attappadi within the Agaly police station limit, Palakkad district, was mentally challenged. A shopkeeper who led the mob suspected that the bag contained rice. “Seeing the mob, he ran to the bank of Bhavani river. The people caught hold of him and beat him with sticks severely. They accused him of stealing some valuable articles from a local house three days ago. Then some people informed Agali Police Station. The police took him to the Government Tribal Hospital, but, he collapsed in the jeep and died on the way.
I have instructed the state DGP to speed up the probe and take strict action in the case.”This heinous act is a blot on Kerala’s progressive society. But I want to assure you that strict action will be taken at the earliest against all the culprits to ensure that such crimes, especially against people from communities that were long marginalised, are not repeated. “Kerala as a whole should stay extremely vigilant to ensure that we continue to remain and progress as a caring, cosmopolitan society, Kerala CM posted on his Facebook page.
The turn of events on Thursday elicited a strong response from across the state and country on Friday after a perpetrator of the beating posted a selfie taken just minutes before the crime. The entire episode was shot on a mobile and posted on social media.
Speaking to the media here on Friday, Malli, mother of the slain youth Madhu, said: “It was yesterday (Thursday) evening that my son was beaten up by a group of people in the forest (near Attapadi-Agali) saying that he was a thief. Then he was handed over to the police and soon he developed complications. He was taken to a hospital, where he died. He is not a thief, instead, he was not of sound mind, said the grieving mother. Madhu’s body has been taken for an autopsy to the Thrissur Medical College hospital and would then be brought to the village.

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