Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 18 (IANS) The Kerala government is facing the heat over the unnatural death of 24-year-old Bihari youth S.S. Mann who was brought dead from a mental hospital here to the Medical College Hospital on Aug 4.
Mann was reportedly suffering from a mental illness.
The Kerala government ordered a crime branch probe Aug 6. Two officials of the mental hospital have been arrested in connection with Mann’s death.
But a group of activists led by journalist B.R.P. Bhaskar has claimed that the probe does not cover the alleged manhandling of Mann at Mata Amritanandamayi Ashram, from where police took him into custody on Aug 1.
Mann was arrested when he created a ruckus at spiritual leader Mata Amritanandamayi Ashram near Kollam on Aug 1.
He was charged with trying to attack the Mata.
The activists are pointing out that the government has taken action against five doctors attached to the mental hospital here and the two government hospitals in Kollam where Mann was treated, but ignored those who allegedly meted out rough treatment to him at the ashram.
The five doctors against whom action was taken were: One doctor appointed on contract basis at the mental hospital here, dismissed from service; two others transferred, and two doctors in Kollam district.
To protest the action, the Kerala Government Medical Officers Association (KGMOA) decided to boycott the out-patient department Saturday for two hours. The KGMOA has also declared a strike on Monday in the capital city.
Friends of Mann said they will Sunday take out a protest rally in Delhi at Jantar Mantar to coincide with Mann’s 24th birthday. Mann’s family has demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation probe into his death, terming it “murder”.
A team of police officials from Mann’s hometown Gaya visited the mental hospital here and spoke to the local police to ascertain the facts regarding Mann’s death.
“The state government is shutting its eyes to reality in the case. There is video footage showing that Mann was manhandled at the Ashram. A more effective probe has to take place,” said Bhaskar.
Mann’s death has rekindled the memories of V. Narayanan Kutty, a relative of former Kerala chief minister C. Achutha Menon, who met a similar fate 22 years ago. Demands are now being made that the unnatural death of Kutty be investigated afresh.
Kutty too was picked up by inmates of Mata Amritanandamayi’s ashram for being a nuisance there and was lodged in the mental hospital in Thiruvananthapuram. He died under mysterious circumstances.
The Daily News Post India (tdnpost)