The killing of a Dalit youth has shocked Kerala and brought the state shame.
In a case of honour killing of dalit youth, Kevin Joseph, a 23 year old Dalit from a poor family, was tortured to death just days after he registered his marriage with Neenu (21) who belonged to a rich family.
Kevin’s body was today found floating in a river. The body had signs of gruesome torture where the eyes were reportedly gouged out even as the body bore signs of beatings. He was beaten to death allegedly by the girl’s brother and relatives who are on the run.
Kevin and his relative Aneesh (23) were kidnapped by a gang that broke into their home around 1am on Sunday. Police said the gang was sent by Neenu’s family who did not favour the alliance.
The prime accused reportedly belongs to the DYFI, the youth wing of the CPI-M which governs Kerala. Two people from the DYFI — Ishal and Niyas — have been detained in relation to the case. They are reportedly friends of Neenu’s brother. Niyas reportedly had one of the vehicles, and is the Unit Secretary of the DYFI in Thenmala.
The suspects have reportedly escaped to Tenkasi in Tamil Nadu.
The police reportedly failed to act on the complaint of Neenu who had gone to the local police station. The police did not initially register the complaint as the station officer was reportedly busy with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s security.Following an uproar, the Superintendent of Police, Kottayam, VM Mohammed Rafique, was today transferred for not acting on the missing complaint filed. Apart from this, Sub-inspector MS Shibu and the ASI have been suspended. The police reportedly did not act on Neenu’s missing complaint apart from not taking the complaint filed by Kevin’s family seriously.
Massive protests are being held outside the Gandhinagar Police Station by the Congress, the BJP and All India Youth Federation.
Kevin, a Dalit, had converted to Christianity after he fell in love with Neenu. The girl’s father is a Christian, while her mother is a Muslim. Her brother had opposed the wedding right from the beginning.
Neenu met Kevin two years ago while she was studying in a local college. After hearing about their wedding, her relatives filed a complaint at Gandhinagar police station. The police had summoned both families to the station. However, Neenu left with Kevin. Fearing her family, Kevin took her to a hostel in the locality.
On Sunday morning, the gang arrived in three vehicles, broke into Kevin’s house, brandished weapons and abducted him. The whole house was ransacked in the process.
The Congress has demanded the resignation of Pinarayi Vijayan who holds the Home portfolio. Vijayan refused to comment on the party angle and said two teams of police officials are investigating the case.