state news

Mumbai: Six prison officials booked for allegedly killing convict in Byculla jail

Inmates had protested after Manjula Shetya died, as she was allegedly sexually assaulted and beaten up by jailers.

Five constables and a jailer in Byculla prison, Mumbai, have been booked for allegedly sexually assaulting and killing a convict Manjula Shetye, Hindustan Times reported on Tuesday. Shetye’s death on June 23 had triggered a protest, and former media tycoon Indrani Mukerjea (pictured above), who was jailed for killing her daughter Sheena Bora, was among the 200 women inmates booked for inciting a prison riot.

An eyewitness filed a First Information Report in connection with Shetye’s death at Nagpada police station. According to it, the six prison officials had brutally beaten up and sexually assaulted the 38-year-old convict for complaining about two eggs and five slices of bread that were missing from the morning ration.

The eyewitness told the police that Shetye was first called to Jail Officer Manisha Pokharkar’s private room, reported Hindustan Times. She was allegedly assaulted there and sent back to the barrack. Later, women constables Bindu Naikade, Waseema Shaikh, Shital Shegaonkar, Surekha Gulve and Aarti Shingne made her strip and raped her with a stick, or lathi.

Initially no official came to Shetye’s help, the FIR said. Shetye was taken to the resident doctor after she fell unconscious in the bathroom. She later died at JJ Hospital. The post-mortem report said Shetye had about 11 to 13 bruises while hospital dean TP Lahane told Hindustan Times that her lungs were damaged.

Indrani Mukerjea’s role

Meanwhile, the police are likely to question Indrani Mukerjea about her role in the alleged prison riot. Mukerjea claimed to know details about how Shetye was killed and alleged that prison officers had threatened her with sexual assault, reported NDTV. She will appear before a special CBI court on Wednesday.

Her lawyer Gunjan Mangala also alleged that jail officials had assaulted Mukerjea. “Bruise marks can be seen on Indrani Mukerjea’s body all over after being beaten by jail staff,” Mangala told the court on Tuesday, according to The Times of India.

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