//ASI, driver suspended for allegedly assaulting priest

ASI, driver suspended for allegedly assaulting priest

PATHANAMTHITTA: Additional Sub-Inspector of Police M. Shihabuddin and jeep driver Aravindakshan Nair attached to the Aranmula police station have been suspended from service, pending inquiry, for allegedly manhandling a priest in Aranmula late on Tuesday night

George Kadambookad, the priest of the St. Sebastian’s Catholic Church in Aranmula, was allegedly manhandled following interrogation by the police personnel. The priest was on his way home from the church on his motorcycle along with two other pillion riders.

The parish members, who assembled at the church following the incident, laid siege to the Aranmula police station demanding action against the `erring’ police personnel. Additional Superintendent of Police Sidharth Sashni, Circle Inspector K. Sreekumar and Sub Inspector K.R. Pratheek rushed to the station immediately afterwards. The siege was withdrawn following talks between the police officials and the church leaders around 4 a.m.

on Wednesday However, hundreds of parish members again staged a march to the police station on Wednesday morning alleging police inaction. Addressing a press conference in Kozhencherry, Vicar General of the Punalur Diocese of the Latin Catholic Church Martin P. Fernadez demanded the suspension of the erring police personnel. He has also warned of serious consequences if the Government failed to take action against the police official and driver who had allegedly assaulted the priest.

Superintendent of Police T.P. Rajagopal has said that both the police personnel have been placed under suspension and the Deputy Superintendent of Police (Crime Detachment) T.C. Mani would inquire into the incident.

http://www.hindu.com/2006/01/19/stories/2006011909340300.htm